That's what I get for not reading a bibliography page. I didn't realize Kay Kenyon wrote short stories. Apparently she does.
"Cyto Couture" is the second story in the Lou Anders edited anthology Fast Forward 2. Kenyon tells a story of a street boy being taken in to work in a couture garment factory, only since this is science fiction, the garments are grown rather than simply made. There is a question of how much Lorelei (the designer running the factory) knows about how Nat's extra loving care is affecting the cyto-garments, and that's what makes this story so fascinating.
Science fiction readers are used to bio-engineering and all sorts of cool things that might be possible in the future, and honestly, this is a path I can certainly see fashion going in once it is possible and reasonably affordable to produce.
What I didn't expect was the direction which Kay Kenyon took this story. I appreciate being genuinely surprised and "Cyto Couture" was a treat. It also features Kenyon's typically smooth, skillful, and invisible prose. She draws readers in without them how it happened.
I didn't write about the first story in Fast Forward 2, pretty much because I had nothing to say about "Catherine Drewe" and I wasn't over-impressed by it. This is an anthology I have high hopes for. Fast Forward 1 was one of my favorites of 2007 (though I didn't read it until 2008) and I thought it was the start to an exciting new anthology series. "Cyto Couture" assures me there will much to like in Fast Forward 2, even if it won't be every story.