Shaun Kearney showed his collection for Cynthia Steffe
on mannequins at a cocktail party, hoping guests would be better able to take in the beadwork and embroidery they couldn't have seen on the runway (or feel comfortable ogling on an actual model). Handicraft and embellishments were key for Kearney this season, and he worked them through Spring's collection, which took the Steffe girl from safari country to the desert and, finally, to the tropics. Geometric patterns on a hand-braided fringe dress in black and khaki had that tribal edge that's so in right now. Scattered, colorful sequins on a T-shirt dress had a peeling paint effect, turning what could have been fussy into something simply fun. Wide-leg silk pants and a matching tee looked out of place amid the collection's more structured pieces, but by that point Kearney had moved on to warmer climes. A chiffon gown with a beaded waistband wasn't strikingly original, but it would look great next to a drink with an umbrella in it.