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Viva Gam!

With stepped-up textures, patterns, and colors, this season's tights have moved way past basic black. Get a leg up on this designer trend with these budget stretchers.

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You don't have to wear boring nylons this fall. There's far splashier stuff at Chanel (logo tights) and Prada (fishnets) -- and cheaper versions abound. All of our favorites together cost less than a single new dress.

For day, pick warm, cozy styles that will last a few winters, and wear them with skirts and chic pumps (loafers or flats look a bit grade school-ish). We love Hue's argyles ($18 at Bloomingdale's). And we'd splurge on Gerbe's tweeds ($45 at Henri Bendel) and Wolford's soft ribbed ones ($45 at Wolford stores). At night, try sexier styles -- preferably with high-heeled sandals. Nine West has sleek, sheer, gold-flecked ones ($11 at Lord & Taylor); cK Calvin Klein's got gilded opaques ($11 at Macy's). The best fishnets are burgundy or brown -- but Z Pantyhose makes them in twelve other colors too ($10 at the Sock Man). The ultimate holiday legwear, though, comes from Tommy Hilfiger -- we haven't seen anything as snazzy as his tartans since the Sock Shop went out of business ($18 at Macy's) .

The Sock Man, 27 St. Marks Place (212-529-0300).

Picks of the Week
Urbani Truffles & Caviar is taking half off Iranian caviar. Beluga's from $81.50 (for a 30-gram tin); Osetra's from $45.20; Sevruga's from $35.70. Mother-of-pearl spoons and an insulated pouch come free with every order. Call 800-281-2330 or visit www.urbani.com; through 11/30.

Belle Fleur, one of the fashion crowd's favorite florists, is taking more than half off silk flowers, vases, urns, and candles ($2-$200). 11 E. 22nd St., second floor (212-254-8703); A.E., M.C., V.; Thurs.- Sat. 11-7; 11/2-11/4.

James Purcell cocktail and evening clothes are 70 percent off, from $150 to $2,000. Courtyard Marriott, 114 W. 40th St., lower lobby; M.C., V.; Wed.- Thurs. 11-6; 11/1-11/2.

Aeffe, the showroom for Narciso Rodriguez, Moschino, Alberta Ferretti, Jean Paul Gaultier, and Ozbek, is clearing fall samples for men and women at 60 percent off, from $20 to $1,000. Mostly mediums. 30 W. 56th St. (212-632-9300); A.E., M.C., V.; Wed.-Fri. 10-6; 11/1-11/3.

The Terence Conran Shop's warehouse sale has chic home things for at least half off (furniture, tableware, linens, small accessories, and more). 25-11 Hunters Point Ave., Long Island City (212-755-9079); A.E., M.C., V.; Fri.-Sun. 10-5; 11/3-11/12.

Leah C. Millinery's feather-trimmed hats and hair things for the holidays are 25 percent off, $35-$300. Jeanette Lang, 171 Sullivan St. (212-807-0699); A.E., M.C., V; Thurs.-Sun. 11-8; 11/2-11/12.

Check out New York Shops, our guide to the city's best stores, including a five-month roundup of "Sales & Bargains." On sale at newsstands now. To order a copy, call 800-496-7833 ($4.99 plus $2 shipping and handling).


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