Turn for the Better

New lines from top designers offer stylish looks at much lower costs

The fashion world just got a whole lot better--literally. "Better" is a retail-fashion term that describes clothing lines that are not as expensive as designer collections--by implication, those would be the "best"--and are affordable for most middle-class consumers. This year has seen an influx into this market, allowing regular folks who like flipping through fashion magazines to finally live out some of their glossy daydreams. Retailers are carrying debut collections in this category from Tommy Hilfiger, Michael Kors and Calvin Klein, and new lines from historical better providers Liz Claiborne and Jones New York. "Better is affordable luxury," says LaVelle Olexa,...

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