Before the start of the Narciso Rodriguez show, Gloria Estefan, who shares the designer’s Cuban heritage, took a front-row seat, her Latin beats blasting on repeat. They led some to think that Rodriguez would explore his vibrant roots for fall. From the first exit — a drop-waist chartreuse coat with an architectural skirt — it was clear he had something else on his mind. “There’s so much inspiration that went into it,” Rodriguez said after the show. “Collaging, collecting, color, film stills, many artists, the film world. A lot of thinking.”

There was indeed a lot to ponder in the lineup, most of it great. Rodriguez played up his strong construction skills, layering together different colors and fabrics for pieces with a Japanese feel, like the draped kimono effect on an orange silk top with a deep red skirt that appeared wrapped. In some cases, such as the asymmetric burgundy and saffron halter slipdress, it seemed like two dresses were layered into one. The techniques could have looked awkward, but Rodriguez executed them exquisitely. His new accessories collection, which made its debut on the runway, was a strong addition and featured some fabulous color-blocked gloves and functional handbags in exotic skins and suede.

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