http://www.arabnews.com/news/445516 Many thoughts flash through a woman’s mind on the eve of a double mastectomy — most prominently fears about her mortality. But in the thicket of complicated emotions that crowded Laurel Kamen’s brain as she sat in her Kalorama apartment contemplating her diagnosis of breast cancer, she also had to reckon with fretfulness about her future wardrobe. A woman of accomplishment and intelligence, who is neither shallow nor narcissistic, Kamen had none of the tortured ambivalence about fashion and style that haunts so many women of her stature. Kamen, a Chicago native and a former executive at American Express who had spent a chunk of her formative years in New York, considered fashion an expression of confidence and control. Put simply, she liked looking good and she wanted to continue looking good after both of her breasts were removed and she adjusted to the contours of a torso not reconstructed with either silicone or saline. In preparation for her surgery, Kamen had been prowling the Internet on a pre-shopping spree, searching for clothes that would flatter what would soon be her new shape but that would also be comfortable and practical enough to wear while she was recuperating. She didn’t find any clothes that met her criteria — sophisticated, grown-up — and out of her frustration came a business plan. She decided to create a line of clothing for women who have had breast cancer. The collection would see them through their recuperation after a mastectomy. And it would flatter their post-operative figures — whether they chose reconstructive surgery, prosthetics or nothing. Sadly, this is no small market. According to the American Cancer Society, there will be 232,340 new cases of invasive breast cancer diagnosed in women this year. But Kamen’s research turned up few good, accessible fashion options for them — or her.
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