Feminine, not sexy. Martha’s Vineyard. The Hamptons. Carolyn Bessette Kennedy and John John. Cotton. Linen. Lace. White. Black. Blush. Virgin. All of these words flowed from Fausto Puglisi’s mouth to describe his spring collection. He wasn’t speaking in tongues. “It’s the new Fausto,” he declared backstage, explaining that, to paraphrase, he was tired of being a slave to the over-the-top glam/rock with a thick Sicilian accent shtick for which he’s best known. The celebrities and stylists want to flaunt his most sparkly, wild stuff, but there are other sides to his story.

Could Fausto possibly still be Fausto without the flashy colorblocking, black leather and gold Medusa hardware? It’s hard to imagine but, yes, and it didn’t read like an identity crisis. In fact, the soft stuff suits him quite well. Puglisi dug into the delicate femininity of white cotton lace and linen, tutus, ruffles and broderie anglais done in hushed tones. Ever a fan of American culture — even if he’s not a fan of who’s currently in charge — he fused the darling romance with the chic style of Bessette-Kennedy — a much prettier face of the American Dream than the U.S.’s current representation — and bent it to his will.

There were slipdresses, lace shirtdesses, a silk robe trimmed in fringe, a tiered ruffled maxidress in a black-and-white floral print, with black and red flowers across the rear-end. He cut the daintiness with well-considered edge, slicing the slits on otherwise sweet dresses a little too high for church, and contrasting all the lace with leather flowers and touches of red and gold embroidery. The models wore ballet flats or cowboy boot and little crowns dangling with coral and pearl charms. Materials looked luxe and the details were wonderfully executed. Fausto without the flash felt extra fresh.

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