A cliché, definitely, but if there’s a time and a place to employ a pasta metaphor to explain your collection it’s in Milan for an Italian megabrand. “Al dente” is how Derek Lam described his spring collection for Tod’s, specifically the ready-to-wear. “It’s slightly undercooked,” he said Friday at the presentation at the Villa Necchi Campiglio. “That’s where the accessories come in.” By that he meant that the clothes were crisp and unfettered yet belied expert technique. Leather, of course, was the star ingredient. There were great-looking, popped collar blazers made from leather bonded to linen, gauze halter gowns with leather trim, and a simple tank dress that was black leather on the top with a skirt that appeared to be denim but was actually — you guessed it — leather.

This story first appeared in the September 26, 2011 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

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