Monday, May 28, 2007

The Right to Bare Arms

Warm weather and a fashion throwback to the 1970s have produced a trend where women and girls of all shapes and sizes are wearing next to nothing above the waist.

Halters, tube tops and bustiers can be seen all over city streets, even in cool mornings and evenings. Many of the garments look like underwear, making one feel that Park Avenue has become a big dressing room. Or maybe an examination room.

A store downtown has a wall full of these get-ups, slathered with lace, sequins and beads. Maybe they look good, if still inappropriate, on women with perfect figures. But matrons who would look better in Mother Hubbards are also wearing them.

Schools and camps, not to mention businesses, ban these garments almost uniformly. But the dress codes don’t mean much to girls and women who embrace the look.

Somewhere between the burqa and the bustier, there must be a compromise for everyday street wear.


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