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Karen Walker's Spring 2013 Collection Came from Outer Space

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Image via Getty

Karen Walker's spring 2013 collection was inspired by the space-age optimism of the 1950s, but her color palette seemed to be inspired by lunch. Dresses were peach, sweaters were oatmeal, a quilted pantsuit came in mustard. One shirt was even made of cheesecloth, and many of the looks were finished off with a neat pair of mint and cream loafers. (Mmm, mint and cream.)

The effect was, for the most part, delicious. Walker is known for her geek-chic, prim-with-a-twist aesthetic, best demonstrated by her ubiquitous round sunglasses. She's more interested in being smart and referential than straight-up sexy, and the space-travel theme let her play with all sorts of retro images.

Her pink crêpe de Chine "space battle" print, which appeared in the form of several dresses and tops, literally depicted a bunch of rocket ships and asteroids. But she also showed a range of polka-dotted pieces that only implied astronomy if you assumed every single dot was a planet.

Some of these came off a tad clowny; it's very hard to wear pleated, high-waisted polka-dot trousers, especially if they're paired with a top in a different polka-dot print. But Walker's sense of humor was part of the show. Take, for example, the models' bangs, which were so long that their noses were barely peeking through. The effect was an army of beautiful sheepdogs—that or gorgeous astronauts wearing helmets made of hair.

· Karen Walker [Official Site]
· All Fashion Week coverage [Racked]