What a difference a season makes. After Manish Arora’s overstated sci-fi brash with little dash for spring, the designer toned things down considerably for his second season at the house — a smart move that resulted in a realistic version of Paco Rabanne with a higher wearability factor. Arora played up sculptural silhouettes and textural details, but with a sense of subtlety, as much as this brand can be. He used silver mesh as insets, surface panels and hems for a gray linear shift dress and a blue minidress with good results, even if some of his gold chain-mail looks added an unnecessary heaviness to the lineup. Arora is challenged to find ways to update the namesake founder’s futuristic vision, which now looks almost amusingly dated. Fall was a first step in that direction, down to the finale dresses that mixed gold metal grids and black fur embellishments. They added a touch of whimsy and are sure to please the Barbarellas out there.

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