BCBG Max Azria: Max and Lubov Azria made their intentions perfectly clear — transparent, to be exact — as they employed a see-through motif in organza trenches and dresses layered over delicate knits. There was a deliberate loosey-goosey attitude in the way they pintucked, pleated and draped everything. While excess details bogged down past efforts, here the dusky pink, taupe and gray palette kept things calm, collected and charming.

Adam Adam Lippes: It's not an easy feat to take the notion of classic sportswear and make it quirky and interesting. But Adam Lippes did just that in his first formal runway show by turning earthy into a look that was more chic than crunchy. Consider his knockout safari looks: the burlap, long pencil skirt and sheer plunging halter top, or the car coat over a tank and silk linen shorts. Miniskirts were gently bubbled, shorts were pleated or tied, and most of it was wonderfully accessorized with headwraps and hats fit for a modern-day Isak Dinesen. But Lippes insists he's now inspired by Kyoto, as well as artists Sonia Delaunay and Morris Louis. That could account for the dressier mood swing of fabulous hand-painted ombré dresses, simple shifts with bold stripes and long origami pleated dresses. Lippes has indeed traveled far since that first perfect collection of cotton and cashmere underwear.

Elie Tahari: In a refreshing in-and-out presentation, Elie Tahari did already-harried showgoers a huge favor. He displayed only what was new to the Tahari table, leaving staple suits and such for the retail floor. His latest additions were more languid — flowing dresses and chic, high-waist pants — in a painter's palette of what he chirpily called "bright, happy colors." To wit, a carefree, travel-loving spirit was evident in the tropical prints, safari toppers and any number of wear-worthy accessories — especially a pair of totes, one in camel croc and the other in cheery kelly green leather.


Y & Kei: They called it “urban hippie,” but aside from touches of paisley prints and embroidery, Hanii Y and Gene Kei’s collection was full of modern sportswear such as the standout white cotton dress with a rosette-covered bodice.Rag & Bone: Marcus Wainwright and David Neville gave traditional sportswear a shot of zing — think crisp minidresses and a coated cotton mini mac worn over a Bond-worthy bikini.

Generra: Pina Ferlisi had an effortless rocker chick as her muse, and the hard edge of her patent bombers, Eighties jersey minidresses and metallic tops did a lot to make up for a lack of innovation.

Toni Maticevski: Toni Maticevski should lose the fussy eveningwear and stick with the slouchy, relaxed tux looks.

Alexandre Herchcovitch: Nearly every look was a clever spin-off of the tuxedo in Alexandre Herchcovitch’s darker, more grown-up show.

Erin Fetherston: Fetherston’s collection of high-waist pants and refreshing dresses married the Forties and the Seventies, but the fabrics needed an upgrade.

Rock & Republic: Michael Ball invoked the glam-girl looks of Studio 54 with a slew of disco-bright, flesh-baring minidresses and short-shorts, perfect for Hollywood’s party posse.

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