fashion styles from around the world

  • Paris, France
    Converse sneakers are popular in Paris? Who would have thought. Locals and world travelers from nine different countries gave us the lowdown on what’s really hot (and not) on the international stage. See if any of your favorite pieces are popular somewhere else. (Then if others don’t understand your style, you can always justify it as being worldly.)
    Barcelona, Spain
    Women in Barcelona love to wear vibrant colors and mix and match bold patterns typically shied away from in the United States, says Anastasia Savvina, 21. The liberal mixing can be seen in the collections of two of their most popular designers—Custo Barcelona and Desigual.

    Trend: Mullets
    Mullets are incredibly popular in Spain, and not just for men! The “business in the front, party in the back” style has become a hit among young Spaniards, especially in populous cities like Madrid and Barcelona. “It's funny, because when some of my Spanish friends asked about style differences, they were surprised to hear that mullets are definitely not hip [in America],” says Sarah West, 22.

    Zambia, Africa
    Trend: Chitenges
    Bamaayos [women] generally wear a chitenge (or colorfully printed wrap) on the bottom, and a western style T-Shirt or blouse on the top, juxtaposing American imports with traditional Zambian attire, says resident Virginia Tedrow
    Non Trend: Above the knee
    Virginia also observed a non trend: showing anything above the knee for women is considered taboo, although revealing your breasts is completely normal
    London, England
    Trend: Wellies

    “The thing that is selling out everywhere is wellies [rain boots],” says local Alison Saki, 33. The galosh-spree makes sense considering the BBC reported that “the summer of 2007 will go on record as a washout.”
    Cuzco, Peru
    Trend: Alpaca wool

    “Walking around in Cuzco, Peru is like being in a time warp,” says Minna Tran, 26. Cuzco has yet to be influenced by outside trends, which means the locals wear alpaca wool clothing still popular from the Incan days, dyed in bright red, blue and green.
    Beijing, China
    Trend: Adornments

    “Beijing is an international city with a ridiculous nightlife. I think fashion tends to accompany the mentality of going somewhere to see and be seen,” says Kimberly Kyan, 24. So what do women wear to be seen? “There is something very distinct about the little added features, like dangly things from their t-shirts, or that extra line of beads sewed into their jeans.
    Singapore, Singapore
    Trend: Crocs

    “I think Singapore is really about eating, shopping and clubbing. We mirror the worldwide trends. I wouldn't say we are clueless, but don't remind me about the time ‘Crocs’ shoes became popular ... and still are!” says resident Juliana Chan, 26.
    Paris, France
    Trend: Patent Leather Flats

    “One accessory becomes really hot and everyone buys it. Last year it was Chuck Tailor sneakers. Every well dressed French woman would wear them for running around in the day, and have them in many colors ... These days patent leather flats are seen quite often,” says French fashion photographer Sara White Wilson, 28.
    Sparkle Belts.
    Another bedazzle nightmare. The motto: the more low-slung, the better. Why I chose to look like I shopped at the 99 cent store is beyond me.

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