After a couple of seasons off the runway, Texan Lela Rose returned with a spring collection that she said was designed for steel magnolias: "women with an ethereal quality who are powerful, too." Most of the pieces—tent dresses; tiered pinafores; a lantern coat; full, short skirts topped by blouses with bell sleeves, all in watercolor pastels, silver, and ivory—belong in the first camp. But there was an oddly charming white gown with ruffles down the back that looked like what you'd get if an angel and a stegosaurus got together to make babies.

Ten weeks shy of giving birth to her second child, Rose focused on the loose volumes that are shaping up to be a strong spring trend, adding her favorite girly touches. Large crystals dotted grosgrain belts, bands of silver basket weave decorated the hem of a white faille dress, and rose florets bloomed at the neckline of a sleeveless shift. There wasn't a hard edge in the house, nor has Rose radically altered her aesthetic during her absence from the catwalk, but that suits her well-connected customers and front-row pals just fine.