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Kaelen: Light, airy and shoulder-padded

A model poses at the Kaelen Spring 2013

A model poses at the Kaelen Spring 2013 fashion presentation during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week at The Box at Lincoln Center in Manhattan. (Sept. 6, 2012) Credit: Getty Images

Kaelen offered a sweet, pared-down collection of peplums, sateen separates, molded neoprene — and perhaps the most eye-catching item of all … what she was calling a “strong shoulder” (as in — yes — shoulder pads).

The shoulder pads designed by Kaelen Haworth, a Toronto native and Parson’s grad, aren’t gonzo Joan Crawford numbers.  Instead, they’re diminutive, domelike, just a hint of lightweight structure under a cotton sateen blazer or a sheer, daisy-yellow shirtdress.  Shoulder pads from the ‘40s…or ‘80s…were jaunty, angular…BIG.  But everything in this collection seems lightweight and airy.

Like that sateen jacket, which the designer pairs with a yellow silk button-down shirt and sateen shorts, the shorts and blazer dappled in a soft, water-colory rock print in “nude,” neutral shades.  Another filmy, button-down shirt is worn atop a pale, pale, pale pink neoprene wrap skirt.  The neoprene looks vaguely like it’s cut in the shape of a parallelogram, wrapped 'round the hips, then gently tacked on at one side.  Neoprene pops up again in a peplum top, a jacket and seamed jumpsuit, and though this fabric is often the stuff of edgy street looks and athletic gear, here it seems gentle and feminine.

For gals with more ‘tude, there are bolder looks — that organic rock print gets repeated on a blazer and trousers, but in darker shades of black and graphite.  And a tank and mid-calf-length dress come in can’t-miss-‘em black-and-white referee stripes.

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