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Back to school in GI style

Tuesday, August 19, 2003

By Laura Passero ~ Special to The Hartford Courant

GI Joe, eat your heart out.

This season, the hot look is faux military. And it's a must-have for back to school this fall.

Regular jeans, shirts, mini skirts and warm-up outfits are all being spiced up with a little Army green.

"It is just a very trendy thing, and especially in the fall, that green color is just perfect," said Laura McDowell, TJ Maxx's fashion spokeswoman. "This fall, you are seeing lots of camouflage pants and Army green khakis." The military look isn't a new fad but a refreshed one.

"Last year, we saw lots of big, baggy Army jackets with stars on it. Now it's more updated with the same material. This year, though, it's a little more fitted and stylish for a variety of kids," McDowell said. "This year's look is a new interpretation."

"I'm sure kids are buying the clothes for two reasons. They are buying the clothes because it's stylish and because it's supporting their country."

Here's a look at some of the stylish military-themed clothes you can be stylin' in and where to find them:

At TJ Maxx stores, fitted camouflage pants are available for both boys and girls at $19.99. Athletic jacket and pants for her run at $14.99 each.

Accessories are also turning up very green in an olive-and-floral print backpack for $12.99. This bag is perfect for the average student, with ample amounts of different size pockets for an assortment of things, including a cell phone and water bottle.

Information: TJMAXX.com

Marshalls has a $16.99 military-inspired mini skirt with great big pockets on each side, giving it the Army look.

For him, you can try out some cargo pants in Army green, also for $16.99. A felt lime-green bucket hat is also $16.99. Styles vary at each Marshall store.

Information: Marshallsonline.com or 800-MARSHALLS.

The Abercrombie and Fitch fall collection includes some Army ware. For her, there is the highland field jacket in olive. The jacket is a classic fit with four pockets in the front and fur around the hood; it runs $129. Girls also can enjoy a military baguette and tote, from $34.50 to $49.50. For guys there are vintage fatigues, ranging from $49.50 to $59.50.

L.L. Bean has an updated version of its most popular backpack this season. The deluxe book pack with a binder organizer comes in new colors such as blue camouflage, pink camouflage and purple camouflage along with green and lime. It is priced at $39.50, available through L.L. Bean's catalog and online at www.llbean. com.


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