SLIDESHOW

Dell Pins Hopes of Laptop Sales on Sexy Designs

Dell's stylish laptops are a whirl of style and color, designed to help you make a “fashion statement” and express yourself.

Fall Fashions for Dell Laptops

Your inner fashionista might silently cheer, but your inner geek is likely to jeer. When launching a laptop line-up at an event this week in New York, Dell executives specifically declined to talk about the usual speeds and feeds, focusing instead on how the company’s “new” laptops will help you make a “fashion statement” and express the real you.

Actually, except for those all important (to Dell) makeovers, the laptops shown off at this week's event were existing Inspiron (1750) and Studio models. Dell's announcements for this fall's fashion season really revolve around 212 (available now) different special laptop covers for sports fans, women who wear nail polish, fashion junkies, and those people who still have enough funds in the bank – despite the grim economy — to make bids at charity auctions. Adding an extra design to your laptop, according to Dell sales representatives, will run you between $40 to $80 depending on the design you choose.

Those in the laptop vanguard can select designs on Dell's Studio Design site from trendy artistes such as Japanese graphic designer Takashi Kusui, skateboard maven Emil Kozak, American photographer Ben Grieme, and Finnish-born fashion illustrator Klaus Haapaniemi.

Fashions for Sports Fans

Were you planning on wearing your worn-out team T-shirt or fleece jacket to World Series doings yet again this year? Forget about it! Imagine strolling proudly through the stadium – or your neighbor's living room — with this little baby tucked under your arm instead. Won't your buddies turn green with envy? And while it might be fun to use the wireless connection for drilling down into player stats between innings, just make sure not to try to catch any foul balls with your laptop. And keep that stadium hotdog with sauerkraut – or those potato chips with equally drippy onion dip – safely away from your mousepad.

Dell has now joined forces with Major League Baseball (MLB) to produce not just one but – count 'em – THREE cover designs for each of the 30 teams in the MLB league. Or you can order an “All Teams” laptop cover like the one shown above. Take your pick from Fan, Classic, or Die-Hard variations. The new series of MLB laptop covers will be available for Dell's Inspiron Mini, Inspiron, and Studio laptops starting next month, as an option priced at $85.

But if you just can't wait until then, we found about 90 other designs with baseball team logos already available on Dell's Design Studio site for the same pricing.

Laptops for Manicured Ladies

If you've managed to defy today's high jobless rate, you can make a big splash in the office in front of the other remaining workers with a laptop color-coordinated to match your nail polish.

Dell is teaming with beauty goods firm OPI on laptop covers that are identical to 20 regular OPI nail polish shades plus six others from an upcoming “Holiday Collection.” Pictured above: “I'm Not Really a Waitress.” You can also choose from among “Rosy Future,” “Dear Santa,” or “Smitten with Mittens,” to name a just a few. Or not. The OBI laptop covers will enter availability in October for Inspiron Mini, Inspiron, and Studio PCs, also as an option priced at $85.

Word to the wise: Keep in mind that your manicure probably won't last too long once you've started pounding out office e-mails on the keyboard. And be sure to spend at least a week's paycheck on an upfront investment in crate-loads of nail lacquer, just in case your fave nail color runs out of stock before your PC hard drive fails.

Laptop Covers from Trendy Artistes – For the Social Networker

If you visit Facebook with very much frequency and/or fervor, maybe you can appreciate the symbolic meaning behind this bright yellow-and-white blob design from Takashi (aka “Taka”) Kusui. Or maybe not?

Taka is “a graduate of the School of Visual Arts, where he majored in graphic design, and earned the Alumni Award for this thesis project: Meu – multilingual intuitive communication – to create a social networking site that breaks down current language barriers.” Hmm. How's that again, Dell?

Laptop Covers from Trendy Artistes – For the Skateboard Set

Has the economic downturn hit you so hard that you've been forced to give up your car in favor of a skateboard? Take heart in the fact that you can at least buy a laptop that coordinates with your new mode of transportation. For skateboarders of all ages – or those who just crave the skateboard look – Emil Kozak has crafted the difficult-to-describe abstract print above.

Actually, like a lot of Dell's other laptop artists, Kozak exhibits his other art work far and wide. He also has tons of commercial clients outside of Dell, including Instant Winner, Blah Apparel, Steel Machine, and Planet Earth.

Known as “Rise – Dusk,” Kozak's laptop cover can be ordered now on Dell's Studio Design site for $85.

Laptop Covers from Trendy Artistes – For the Rock Fan

If you'd rather match your laptop to your tie-dyed T-shirt, this multi-tone reddish-orangish item could be just the thing. Why not tote an "Untitled 17 Red" laptop along the next time you truck through the wilderness to a Woodstock revival concert? It's bigger – and a lot more colorful – than an iPhone, right? So it's sure to make even more of a fashion statement.

In reality, the designer, Ben Grieme, draws at least some of his inspiration from his earlier life experiences in “following punk bands around the Midwest,” Dell tells us. Originally from Ohio and Kentucky, and now living in New York City, Grieme is currently working on a book of landscapes, a new portrait series, and – what else? – color dies.

The Untitled Red 17 laptop cover is available from Dell Design Studio now for $85.

Laptop Covers from Trendy Artistes – For Garden Party Guests

Floral patterns are really more apt for a July garden party than an autumn social fest, don't you think, dear? Falling leaves might be better for now. But why not grab a laptop with this flowery cover design from fashion illustrator Klaus Haapaniemi right now, and then tuck it away in your closet for another 10 months or so? Then, you'll be as lovely as a summer day in these gorgeous hues of green, white, and lilac.

The four covers from these artists are part of an existing line-up of about 200 entries on Dell's Studio Design site. Also this week, Dell announced a “Design Series Refresh,” to consist of 80 new laptop covers, including new artists such as Kenzo Minami, Jim Drain, and Alexia Stamatiou. But at this writing, Dell's 80 new art covers aren't yet posted online.

Luxe PCs for the Lucky Few

Recession? What recession? Throw your cares (and cash) to the winds this year by purchasing this truly precious edition of Dell's high-end Adamo notebook. This Adamo PC sports a snake design — a tantalizing concoction of sterling silver, titanium, and Swarovski crystals – is quite literally priceless.

Although full details haven't been disclosed yet, ultra-chic department store Bergdorf Goodman is planning an auction around this and six other Adamo creations in the near future. As an added bonus, the deal is guilt-free: If you do turn out to be the lucky winner, whatever (undoubtedly hefty) amount you end up paying will be donated to the charity of your choice.

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