All The Rage

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Fashion infestation: Bedbugs are so hot right now

October 8, 2010 | 12:30 pm

This whole New York City bedbug thing seems to have legs, and the little critters are cropping up all over the pop-culture landscape these days -- most recently in an episode of HBO's "Bored to Death." Rage_duckie brown Before that, they invaded the Sept. 27 New Yorker cover.

And maybe it's just me, but it seems like Cimex lectularius has spent less time under the mattresses of Manhattan, and more time making its way into the fashion fold.

First there was the high-profile closures of an Abercrombie & Itch store (sorry, I meant "Fitch"), and a Victoria's Secret boutique (I think we know the secret now ...) and a couple of Niketowns. The bugs also apparently made their way into the offices of Elle magazine.

The bedbug invasion even managed to hit the runway at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week at Lincoln Center. At least the black-and-white insect-print shirts that Duckie Brown included on the catwalk looked like they depicted bedbugs ("Damn it, Jim, I'm an etymologist, not an entomologist!").

In light of such high-profile cameos in the clothing business, I think we might be ready to add a new nickname to an already lengthy list that includes monikers such as "mahogany flat" (which sounds like it should be the name of an a capella singing group), "crimson rambler" (which sounds like an awesome vintage car), "heavy dragoon," and -- my personal favorite --"red coats."

It's just too bad that "fashion bug" is already taken.

-- Adam Tschorn

Photo: A spring-summer 2011 runway look from Duckie Brown, shown during New York Fashion Week. Credit: Peter Stigter and Jonas Gustavvson / For The Times