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Spring preview / United Colors of Benetton bursts with brights, global prints

Written by Sara Bauknecht on .

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NEW YORK -- The spring collection from United Colors of Benetton is a celebration of color and culture, with global-inspired prints and skinny jeans, tops, belts and sheath dresses in just about every Crayola hue.

At the brand's flagship store on Fifth Avenue, racks are packed with options for giving wardrobes a color lift.  Scarves and two-toned flats, as well as the color wall of shirts in a spectrum of solids, offer possibilities for incorporating a pop of color into an otherwise neutral outfit.

The store also features several pieces in prints, many which are nods to other cultures. There are cherry blossom-printed pencil skirts, Aztec-inspired sweaters and voluminous patterned tops in the spirit of Africa.

Silhouettes for spring vary, from boxy sixties-inspired dresses to slender figure-flattering pants. One of the more creative pieces is the reversible sweater, which buttons down one side and has a key hole in the back.  Wear the buttons in the front for a more conservative look, or switch it around to show off a little skin.

For those who've grown up shopping at this family-founded clothing store, it's under going a bit of a makeover since coming under new leadership.  Last April Alessandro Benetton, son of founder Luciano, became chairman, and since the company is aiming for a more modern crowd of young adults who like to work hard, yet have fun, and care about the world.  To get this message out, the store has launched a new ad campaign featuring models from around the world with inspiring stories.

Don't live in New York? No problem. There are stores across the country, including one in Pittsburgh on Walnut Street. A sale on winter clothes runs through February. Look for spring apparel in March.

Here's what's in store for spring (photos by Sara Bauknecht/Post-Gazette) ...

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And something for the men ...

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