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Basic underwear: Black and white and sexy all under

Hilary Alexander Telegraph
Black to basics: models show off a variety of black and white underwear, which seems to have become more fashionable during the recession  Photo: SIMON SONGHURST

Black to basics: models show off a variety of black and white underwear, which seems to have become more fashionable during the recession Photo: SIMON SONGHURST


It's goodbye lilac, welcome back black, as the most popular shades of lingerie are beribboned, laced and given spectacular shape...



One of the treats of Paris fashion week is walking along the rue St Honoré, packed with delicious lingerie boutiques. If there is one thing you can justify buying in budget-conscious times, it is underwear. Even your oldest dress is bound to look better with a new bra underneath.

But what has happened to the strawberry-pink, lilac and pistachio that used to turn the windows into the lingerie version of Ladurée macaroons? Almost all the underwear in the windows is black. That's not to say it is funereal; au contraire. Lacy and beribboned, it has all the sexy, ooh-la-la we associate with Parisian lingerie, especially at Chantelle Thomass.

I asked Averyl Oates, Harvey Nichols's fashion director, if she'd noticed the back-to-black trend. Coincidentally, all she's been wearing under her Balenciaga, Prada and Balmain in Paris this past week is black.

"When I was unpacking, I realised I had only brought black. Maybe it's a response to the times we're in. But it's still the sexiest colour. Black's practical, but that doesn't mean it has to be boring. It's all about lace, shape and decoration."


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