By  on February 19, 2008

It was all in the details for fall, as styles ranging from Seventies-inspired tunics to smartly tailored jackets were spiked with everything from flamingo prints to proper piping.

Just Cavalli: No one likes an animal print more than Roberto Cavalli. So the fact that he opened his Just Cavalli show with one came as no surprise; however, the exotic animal he chose did. A flamingo print — on hosiery, a mini shift, ruffled-front blouse and a pajama-like tunic-and-pants combo — set a tone that was more leisurely than libidinous. The same Seventies-inspired silhouettes appeared throughout, and ranged from tailored, as in adorable plaid tunics and bell-bottom trousers, to a free-flowing filmy, bias-cut floral dress. Add in some standout striped knits, and it was a downright subdued Cavalli moment. Of course, a leopard can’t change its spots entirely. Enter those signature feral prints, which, emblazoned on a floor-sweeping caftan gown, were just Cavalli.

Moschino Cheap & Chic: The invitation to Moschino’s Cheap & Chic show exclaimed, “I’ve got a lot on my mind!” which prompted one reaction: “Uh-oh; brace yourself for a potential overdose of kitsch.” Surprisingly, creative director Rossella Jardini swung substantially the other way. Consider, for instance, the practically polite knit tank thrown over a sheer black blouson and paired with trousers. What that slogan probably alluded to was the myriad motifs sprinkled throughout the collection, as Jardini covered every possible trend while keeping a light, whimsical tone. She looked to the Sixties (Mod-ish geometric coats, a Paco-paillette dress) as well as the Seventies (a Bianca Jagger-worthy pantsuit), and offered both animal prints and florals, the latter executed to pretty painterly effect. How about conservative lady looks? Got ’em. Sequin embellishments gone a bit over-the-top? Ditto. If it all sounds a bit erratic, well, at least this is one designer who gave notice.

C’N’C Costume National: Ennio Capasa designed his fall C’N’C collection with the tech-obsessed street crowd in mind. Knowing such an audience is turned on by details, Capasa went to town tricking things out. Jackets came long and cropped, many of them done up with architectural sleeves, dramatic collars and zippers or buttons, sometimes all together, making it difficult to decipher where one piece began and another ended. Proportion play on boxy jackets with peaked shoulders and asymmetric skirts that bunched at the hem and pouffed at the side felt too forced. And between the murky palette and cumbersome cuts, all those extras made for a bit of a jumble. Accessories, which included some solar-paneled handbags and sky-high heels equipped with step counters, fared better than the clothes.Ballantyne: Cashmere comfort has always been an underlying premise at Ballantyne. And this season the design team pushed that sensibility into four themes, each addressing a woman’s various lifestyle options. For the country chick with an aristo-Anglo-gone-equestrian vibe, her riding jacket is neatly fitted, trimmed in leather piping and — this is key — cut in cushy cashmere jersey. City girls will similarly cozy up to the bright purple duffel coat trimmed in mink, or the soft belted trench with zipper embellishments. Sportier outdoor fare and ladylike “tea-time” looks (cropped cardis and crinkle silk dresses) rounded out the rest of the fall fare. The accessories message, however, was less-is-more. The news here: The company’s signature Diamond Bag now comes in a chic petite size.

More From the Shows

Blugirl: Anna Molinari’s winter white lovelies, dolled up in lashings of creamy cropped fur jackets, mini organza balloon skirts and frothy lace-and-chiffon dresses peeking out of sweet knits looked pretty against a snowy Central Park backdrop.

Schumacher: Kudos to designer Dorothee Schumacher-Singhoff for her plethora of pretty can’t-go-wrong basics, including loose cableknit cardigans tossed over embroidered silk babydolls and smart A-line alpaca coats worn with ruffled camisoles and bubble skirts.

Derercuny: Mina Lee’s design flourishes — cascade draping on short spangled dresses, ruched stand-up collars on filmy metallic blouses and reverse pleats on high-waisted shantung pants — made for an impressive fall outing.

Normaluisa: The show venue was the Military Academy, but that didn’t influence Normaluisa’s design team, who played to a girl’s soft side with silk satin bubble skirts and camisoles, pretty cocktail dresses cut full or slim, flat ribbed knits and swingy fur coats.

Belstaff: A riff on aviator Amelia Earhart’s androgynous style shaped some terrific outerwear, including long sleeveless shearlings and a papery kangaroo leather bomber, which, when paired with high-waisted A-line skirts, added a functional feminine edge.

Brunello Cucinelli: Brunello Cucinelli upped the ante on luxury sportswear by applying mink to nylon jackets, adding silk tiers to wool skirts and layering a parachute silk top under a cropped cashmere knit for a cool take on the twinset.

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