If there were a humanitarian award for peppy pilings, DVF could honorherself. Her delightfully upbeat fall collection’s tag line: “I alwayswanted to live a man’s life in a woman’s body.” Indeed, power tripswould be so much more comfortable while wearing a lovely black and goldjewel-studded drop-waist satin dress! To that end, pinstripes onjackets, tweed and felted wool blazers gave way to short organzadresses, while snug merino cardigans (in pop colors; this was no dourautumnal affair) were layered on blouses and longer floaty georgettefrocks. Nature offered a starting point, too: an exquisite gray andpetal-pink bolero was covered in chiffon rosettes; a chic, dark bluethigh-skimmer was dotted with mirrored paillettes, glittering likestars. Even her trademark wrap dress, in ever-efficient black, had capsleeves worked from stiff, raised black silk leaves.

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