February 10, 2005 New York
The show started with a pinstripe suit, but Karan's definition of power dressing has never been about sharp angles. A deft draper, she manipulated the stretch-wool fabric into origami flowers that graced the neckline of an off-the-shoulder jacket and the hip of a slender skirt. The rosette motif decorated a puff-skirt strapless dress, too, and lent it a hand-touched feeling. Karan played with proportion, building shirts, coats, and capelets in layers, and warded off the winter chill with hoods in iridescent taffeta; hats, the taller the better; and turned-up collars on an Elizabethan scale.
Stretch-silk goddess gowns were tricked out with too many straps and worn with frowsy, distracting gloves. In contrast, her strongest evening pieces, full-skirt jewel-tone chiffon and taffeta numbers, had the sculpted look of her daywear. And when it came time to take a well-deserved bow, Karan didn't let her broken leg stop her. Talk about the power of a woman.