Friday, June 16, 2000

Cool for sale

Car, clothes or shades - maybe you can beat the heat if you buy what's hot

By Marsie Hall Newbold
Enquirer Contributor

Libby Dunlap with her PT Cruiser.
(Ernest Coleman photo)
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        What's hot enough to make you cool this summer?

        How about tooling around town in the hottest new car on the road, a Chrysler PT Cruiser? That's assuming you can get your hands on one. The vaguely 1940's gangster-movie style vehicle is on back-order at Chrysler dealerships all over the country.

        Libby Dunlap, 22, of Milford, a newly minted graduate of Centre College in Danville, Ky., was fortunate enough to do just that.

        “I bought it on (a) Sunday and took it home the same day,” she giggles.

        Ms. Dunlap purchased a black model with black tinted windows and a taupe cloth interior. Why? That was the only one available at Mall Chrysler Plymouth-Jeep on Burlington Pike in Florence. It was parked in the back of the dealership because it had been special ordered for another customer.

  This week, we present a summer survival series. Each day we complete this sentence, “I could keep my cool this summer if only . . .”
  • Monday: “. . . My backyard were cool.”
  • Tuesday: “. . . I had a pool.”
  • Wednesday: “. . . I had water toys.”
  • Today: “. . . I had a boat.”
  • Friday: “. . . I could be “cool.”
        “The only reason I got it,” Ms. Dunlap confides, “is because she changed her mind at the last minute.”

        “It's a lot of fun to drive,” she says, “People look at me with really confused expressions. I guess that's because they haven't seen one before.”

        After leaving the dealership, she went to a bridal shower. Everyone came outside to look at the car. Then, she was confronted when she drove a friend home from the shower.

        “As I was leaving, her neighbor came out of his house flailing his arms. I thought I'd hit an animal or something, so I stopped. He just wanted to see the car. So, I let him look inside and under the hood.”

Kate Spade bags
(Michael E. Keating photo)
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A place for the keys
        So, if you have a cool car, you need something worthy to carry your keys in. This summer, that would be a Kate Spade handbag.

        The double-handled, square shaped purses are “flying out the door,” according to Lynn Latham, department manager for Handbags, Shoe Salon, Accessories and Hosiery at Saks Fifth Avenue, downtown.

        She should know because the Kate Spade line is available exclusively in Cincinnati at Saks Fifth Avenue.

        Tristate women wearing everything from sundresses to business suits are carrying them. Identifiable by a tiny ribbon with the Kate Spade logo, these lady-like bags are available in a variety of fabrics such as straw, nylon, leather and shantung silk. Patterns range from electric-color floral designs to giraffe and tiger prints.

        “I love 'em,” says Mary Jo Beck, a local entrepreneur who owns four Kate Spade handbags and one tote.

        “They are a bit pricey (from $150 up), Ms. Beck admits, “but extremely functional and really well made.

        “The lines of the bags are very clean and retro, so they're fun to carry. She's taking older designs and bringing them into the year 2000. I'll always be a Kate Spade fan.”

Sunglasses at Eyewear Et Cetera
(Michael E. Keating photo)
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The right eyewear
        No matter where you go this summer, you'll see faces sporting wrap-around sunglasses just like the ones available at Eyewear Et Cetera, downtown.

        “We're selling a lot of pairs with gradient lenses,” says owner, Nancy Fullenkamp, a licensed optician. “Black fading to yellow are the biggest right now, also rose to blue.

        “Smaller pastel color frames with rose colored lenses are also "in.' A lot of them have stones and look just like what we wore 30 years ago,” Ms. Fullenkamp says.

        The lenses are special, too.

        “There are Transitions (the lens that changes color depending on light), mirror colored lenses, polarized lenses, special lenses for golf and fishing, reflection free coatings and driving lenses,” Ms. Fullenkamp says.

        “Right now, the hottest lens is the Carrera Spectrum 589. It gives precision color, has an anti-reflective coating, polarized glare reduction, is water resistant, and is shatterproof with 100 percent UVA and UVB protection.”

        While Ms. Fullenkamp considers sunglasses a necessity, she is tuned into the fashion aspect of them.

        “When people walk out of here, I want everyone to say to them, "Wow! Where did you get those glasses?'” she says.

Diamond studs
        And you're going to need those hip shades to shield your eyes from the dazzling diamond stud earrings showing up in so many ears. They're no longer just for evening wear. Oprah Winfrey, queen of daytime TV, has made them this season's must-have by sporting large, bigger-than-the-star-on-a-Christmas-tree dazzlers on her talk show.

        You can get that Oprah look at EDB's Diamond Showroom (9813 Montgomery Road, Montgomery). For a mere $28,000 you can have the largest pair in the store, 6-carat total weight round diamond studs set in 14-carat yellow gold. Manager Kathy Andrews assures us that gift wrap will be “complimentary.”

        Don't bother, we'll wear them out of the store.

        If your budget doesn't include a trip to EBD's, you can achieve the same look for quite a bit less at T.J. Maxx. They carry diamond-like cubic zirconia studs set in 14 carat gold for $24.99-$39.99.

        According to Tina Robinson, a salesclerk at T.J. Maxx in Florence, “I think they look real. Of course, it depends on how big they are.”

Tan in a bottle
        Need a tan to set off those fabulous faux jewels? We all know it's not safe to bake in the sun anymore, so what to do? See if you can find a bottle of Estee Lauder's Go Bronze tinted self-tanner.

        “It's so popular we're out of stock right now,” says Stacey Johnson, Beauty Adviser for Estee Lauder at Lazarus Florence Mall. “We're expecting another shipment later this month.”

        What makes Go Bronze different from the orangey-streaky self-tanners we've seen in the past? “It's tinted so you can see where you're applying it,” says Ms. Johnson. It works with the melatonin in your skin. I've tried it and think it's great.”

        “Also, it's available in formulas for the face (1.7 oz./$18.50) and body (5 oz./$25).”

Capri pants still hot
        You're going to want to show that great tan off by baring a little skin. So, seriously hip women of all ages are opting for “Laura Petrie” style capri pants.

        “We're selling a fair number,” says Jane Saunders, owner of Cloud 9 of Hyde Park Square and Cloud 9 Too in Madeira. “They are hot this summer, but have been for the past few seasons.”

        Ms. Saunders believes that capri pants are perennial favorites because, “They look quite good on a lot of different people. Customers of all ages are buying them.”

Fashion for feet
        But, hey, you can't wear cool pants without cool shoes.

        “I suggest pairing capri pants with flat sandals,” says April Vanover, a sales clerk at Foot-Lites in Kenwood Towne Centre. “The hottest styles are by Steve Madden ($50 on up.) We can't keep anything by him in stock.”

        “Right now shoe styles are fun,” she continues. “We sell a lot of bright colors and platforms. Straw shoes are very popular, especially in sandals. We're also seeing a lot of leather, elastic, snakeskin and animal prints.”

        Sandals mean bare toes and that means you'll need a flawless pedicure. You can get one for $40-$60 at Identity Salons & Spa in Beechmont or Kenwood.

        “We give people the royal treatment when they get a pedicure here,” says owner Linda Cooper-Keller. “If you are going to use a bronzer, I suggest our Seaweed Pedicure. It exfoliates the skin up to the knee. Removing all that dead skin makes bronzing products go on smoother. Plus, it includes a wonderful massage.”

        According to Ms. Cooper-Keller, French manicures (natural color with white tips) are the hottest look for the toes this summer.

        “I'm wearing one right now,” she says. “But, pastels are the most popular colored polish. Our customers are asking for pinks, blue, silver and ice colors.”

        Cool. Just like you.


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