From fine pleats to floral prints, certain houses have specific signatures, which designers developed further this season. But other firms are still looking for one.

Celine: Newly installed Celine designer Ivana Omazic had the sun in the morning and the moon at night. In between those corny celestial renderings that opened and closed her show, she had a whole lot of merch packed into 47 exits, and piece by piece, some of it looked quite good. A seemingly endless parade of looks with names like "Venus Picnic dress," "Luna Safari combi-short" and "Sun Parade skirt," not to mention five swimsuits, came all decked out with floppy hats, sunglasses, big necklaces, bigger bags and inexplicably, a few pairs of knee socks. Among the show's strengths, much of the sportswear had a snappy attitude, and a pleat-front voile shirtdress brought a distinctive softness to the season's shirt trend. But such is not enough to carry a collection.

Like its sister company Givenchy, Celine is a house in search of a raison d'etre. And like her colleague Ricardo Tisci, Omazic must contend with the reality of an audience brand-bored by past failed reinventions. Her fault — no; her challenge — absolutely. And one almost impossible to address in a single season, especially for someone at the design helm for the first time after years of assisting others. But Celine's clock is ticking, with only so much patience in the communal fashion consciousness.

Sophia Kokosalaki
: Now in her third Paris season, Sophia Kokosalaki has made her very particular sartorial vernacular familiar to many. Her spring show had no shortage of the looks upon which she built her young house: expertly draped pleats that either snaked tightly about the body or fell fluidly. The best of these were at the front end of the show in a fresh palette that ranged from milky whites to quiet mossy greens, grays and nudes. An austere white jersey dress with an inventive hem tucked up into an inverted U-shape was chic and evidence that Kokosalaki is fending off stagnation while still working in her oeuvre.

She cut her pale cottons into polished shapes with just the right touch of detail — clothes that could transport a girl from Sunday afternoon in Santorini to Monday morning in New York. Two washed leather jackets are sure to be a delight for retailers with a cool-girl clientele. In fact, these looks carried off her intricate work far better than a series of sculptural evening dresses in silk that looked heavy and ill-fitting. A brief flirtation with a black-lace boudoir number was similarly unwelcome.

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