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Preppy Villains Rejoice at Perry Ellis

Oct. 27 2008, Published 7:07 a.m. ET

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It looks like the Times' Alessandra Stanley had it right. Even if the housing market is in shambles, we want escapism. We want to ponder the lives of over-privileged teens shagging in the Hamptons on television, and, frankly, we also lust for their carelessly fabulous wardrobes. Pseudo-recession be damned! Thankfully, the Perry Ellis menswear collection on Friday morning seemed ideally suited to luxurious unemployment (our favorite sort).

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Under creative director John Crocco, the Perry Ellis runway was a sea of casual prep (served up with a dash of Palm Springs hedonism). We imagine stylists at the CW's Gossip Girl were foaming at the mouths over the skimpy seersucker camp shirts, drawstring linen pants, and khaki Bermudas accented with hot-pink polka dots. Even the short-sporting boys on the runway had that nonchalant rich kid hair (you know, the poofy side-swept bangs). Fittingly, fashion is imitating art, which is in turn imitating the life none of us are actually living. Can't figure out what any of this MEANS? Well, don't trouble your pretty little heads over it. Just bear in mind that next spring, men everywhere will blithely take to dressing like Chuck Bass in school blazers and plaid "vacation shirts." And, well, Amen.

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