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Nostalgia Is Big Business For Clothing Company

Times change and memories fade, but nostalgia for the past is forever. Retro style is coming back -; from automobiles and home furnishings to sports equipment and consumer electronics. But nowhere is this more apparent than in clothing. Vintage clothing sites are popping up all over the Web, and thrift stores are all the rage. Incorporating vintage pieces into the modern wardrobe has become the latest fad as parents and kids of all ages make a grab for days gone by. Denim Apparel Group, a publicly traded company, bet heavily on that enthusiasm when it recently acquired retro-vintage sportswear company Moonlight Graham, named for a rightfielder who played one game in the majors for the now-defunct New York Giants.

The California-based company has rights to the movies "Field of Dreams" and "Animal House," car company General Motors, Major League Baseball, and beverage giant Cadbury Schwepps, as well as Kellogg's and other retro Americana. Founder and president Bart Silberman has Moonlight Graham poised to become an arbiter of cool, with designs and fabrics that set the company apart from other casual sportswear. "You don't have to be a fan of the New York Mets, Dr Pepper, a 1970 Chevelle SS, Budweiser or the Talking Heads to appreciate what we do," Silberman said. "Our artwork and quality tend to cross over. Of course it appeals to the hardcore fans out there, but a large amount of our business is done solely on the basis of cool art.

" Firmly entrenched in its Melrose location, Moonlight Graham is now exploring new retail locations. Prospects include Armitage Avenue in Chicago's Lincoln Park, Sawgrass Mills in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Thompson Street in New York near New York University and Boston's Newbury Street shopping district.


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