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'Shark Week' makes waves in fashion

Channel your inner surfer with this shark-tooth bracelet;

Channel your inner surfer with this shark-tooth bracelet; $10.50, available at Shark Bites (41 The Plaza, Montauk; 631-668-0772). Photo Credit: Shark Bites

The most wonderful time of the year has returned -- and we're not talking Christmas.

Discovery Channel's Shark Week started yesterday, as did National Geographic's Shark Fest, and the third installment of Sharknado ("Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No!") debuts July 22. But attention to these fearless predators goes well beyond your TV set. With all this attention, fashion has stepped in so you can actually dress the part.

It's not uncommon to find shark silhouettes on board shorts, accessories (shark socks, anyone?) and, of course, ever-popular shark-tooth jewelry.

Peri Allen, owner of Shark Bites in Montauk, has seen the shark fashion trend hit its peak in recent years. "Sharks are in the public eye now more than ever," Allen says, calling the shark-tooth motif strong and bold.

As trendy as shark fashion has become, Allen still recognizes that many people fear these aquatic predators, understandable considering the recent spate of attacks. Still, she believes raising awareness is key. "Sharks are still being slaughtered -- they need to be understood and protected," she says, noting that her store donates a portion of profits to shark conservation.

Other businesses have caught on as well. Jane Moate, owner of JanesTinyThings, was so inspired by the finned creatures that she decided to make nail decals featuring different shark types to coincide with last year's shark week.

"They represent this incredibly ferocious presence," Moate says. "Nail art, to me, should represent something about yourself -- what you love, what you're like -- and wearing sharks on your nails shows that you mean business."

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