Cushnie et Ochs' “Modern Housewives”

In seasons past, Cushnie et Ochs could be broadly characterized by very short hemlines, revealing cut-outs and edgy accessories (spiked patent pumps, anyone?). The youthful, alluring vibe was appropriate to its young designers, Carly Cushnie and Michelle Ochs -- who were themselves fresh out of Parsons -- but somewhat prohibitive to more body-conscious customers.

The ladies seem to have done some growing up since their last showing, and the spring 2012 collection marked a real maturation in the brand's aesthetic.

Opening with a series of crisp white dresses and separates falling just below the knee, there were a number of pieces that could conceivably become staples in a work-week wardrobe rotation. Even their inspiration was rather ladylike, described as a playful take on the quintessential mid-century house wife.

Which isn't to say that these new looks were safe, or uninteresting. There was still enough "edge" to keep younger shoppers excited, like the wavy, geometric straps on a shock-white cocktail dress, or a futuristic metal band around the waist of a pencil skirt. To soften some of the more severe looks, the ladies wisely chose to temper their rigorous geometry with bursts of bubblegum pink and neon yellow -- two budding trends from this summer that we'd be excited to see carry into next spring. 

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