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Top 11 Fashion Trends of 2011

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Fri, Dec 23, 2011 at 10:00 AM

click to enlarge LINA LECARO
  • Lina Lecaro
The barrage of blogs tallying the year in trends and fashion has begun, and of course, we are totally participating. We do it every year, after all.

And while we try to note the obvious, we also strive to call out the stuff you're not likely to see on the other blogs, stuff we note while nightlife traipsing and stuff that inevitably moves from street to mainstream the following year. Like, did anyone else note the "tranimal" trend last year, but us? Nope. We wrote about it and then Gaga brought it into the mainstream, or tried to, soon afterward.

So yeah, there's some obvious inclusions here, but as always, we strive to spotlight the more cutting edge staples seen in Los Angeles. There were looks to love and/or laugh at. Sometimes both at the same time. And that, friends, is fashion, especially in L.A. and most especially after dark: a little frivolous, a bit freaky, but always a ton of fun.

So here, the top 11 fashion trends of 2011 (seen mostly at social functions, clubs and Trader Joe's in Silver Lake and Hollywood). Which look did you do and which ones are totally done? Read on...

click to enlarge LINA LECARO
  • Lina Lecaro
11. Calf Call

If skinny jeans and skin tight/bright leggings on girls -- and guys -- showed no sign of fading away, the ingenious invention known as "Pajama Jeans" may be the final grommet to nail their demise. After all, nothing says dorkville like weird stretchy pants you buy via an infomercial at 3 o'clock in the morning. Unless, of course, you're being ironic. Either way, the legging look's gotta be on its last legs, right? Gay boys are an exception here, of course.

click to enlarge LINA LECARO
  • Lina Lecaro
10. Rainbow Bright

If you're old enough to have died your hair with the original "Manic Panic" you probably weren't rocking rainbow locks this year. These days, most happenin' heads have their own colorists, but for the bold few whose bathrooms look like a scene out of My Little Pony, the original brands -- Crazy Colour and Tish & Snooky's (no relation to the Jersey Shore shorty) -- were still the way to go. Used to be weird hair color was, well, weird, but with Gaga's blue hue and Katy Perry's pink pincurls (on the cover of In Style, no less), transforming tresses from yellow to purple to green seemed as common as a nail polish change.

click to enlarge LINA LECARO
  • Lina Lecaro
9. Nerd Herds

Not sure who came up with the whole "I ♥ Nerds" campaign (guess: a nerd?) but the motto, credo, whatever, was ubiquitous on tons of tees and on cutesy licensed merch from Hello Kitty and Gwen Stefani's Harajuku Mini. Spectacles, plaid shorts, arygle sweaters, etc. got a lot dudes and dames some play this year. Smart!

click to enlarge LINA LECARO
  • Lina Lecaro
8. Hip Lips

Groomed upper lip hair is old news in hipster circles of course, but in 2011 "The Mustache" took on a life of its own, literally. The 'stache became such an iconic/ironic symbol in onto itself, that a face wasn't even necessary anymore. It's like it grew legs and arms and decided live its own life: on accessories, t-shirts, coffee mugs, you name it. The mustache icon (usually with curled up sides) is to the 2000s what the happy face was to the 60s or what the unicorn (and rainbow) was to the 80s. It's a mystical emblem conjuring fantasy and joy, in this case as it pertains to rockstars and pornstars.

click to enlarge nicki_minaj_barbie.jpg
7. Dolled Up

That Aqua song about "Barbie Girls" may be annoying as hell, but it hit upon something that is more prevalent than ever: the desire for gals to be pretty in pink... and plastic. It's "fantastic" after all. Barbie Girls, aka girlie girls, aka girls with blonde hair and boob jobs, are also nothing new, but in 2011, the Matell marketing machine took aim at big girls' bling obsession with a rhinestone jewelry line. Nicki Minaj definitely helped this one along by rocking the baubles with many ensembles, and she unwittingly widened the scope of what a "Barbie Girl" could be, both physically and ethnically. Minaj and Katy Perry also made Barbie pink the palette to pick in 2011, which led many a glam gal to trade in her Russian Red lips and nails for the girlier but no less sexy hue.

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