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Francisco Costa, women’s creative director at Calvin Klein, got to have final say Thursday at New York Fashion Week as one of the last major designers to preview a spring collection, but he left a purposeful impression of things left undone.

It’s what left the crowd wanting more. Edges were left frayed, contrasting linings were revealed, and necklines were bare and exposed, all giving the impression that one was seeing more than they should. A gold hardware frame peeked atop the black sheer-panel dress that closed the show.

Costa has a knack for the “seductive lines,” he mentioned in his notes. He certainly drew eyes to the bust and bodice, offering a series of conical bustiers, which were exactly what they sound like. On their own, they were futuristic but also a little harsh; under a sheer silk corset or a mesh silk crepe coat, they were sexy and edgy.

Calvin Klein continued the many layers of fabrics and textures that have dominated the runways: an abstract lace dress goes over a lacquered satin bustier and a bonded mesh skirt, for example. But the fact that almost every outfit featured black here can’t be called part of that trend _ it’s a way of life for this design house.


It wasn’t just like Grand Central at Marchesa’s New York Fashion Week show on Wednesday _ which drew Kim Kardashian, Kanye West, Tyra Banks and all the photographers who trail them. It was in Grand Central.

The preview of the spring collection was staged at the historic train terminal, but it was hardly rush hour on the runway. The looks turned out by designers Georgina Chapman and Keren Craig were typically embellished and intricate, and required time to study the details. Models also can’t walk all that quickly in the gowns that are jingling with beads or have slim hemlines.

Thanks to the Indian inspiration _ via the Beatles’ 1960s experience with the Maharishi _ there were more colorful hues and easier-to-wear silhouettes than in recent Marchesa collections.

“Last season was Baroque and darker, and the season before that was very ornate,” Chapman said in a preshow interview. “It’s a different mood this season.”

What fashion insiders are really looking for from Marchesa is a clue of what will soon come on Hollywood red carpets. After this, it’s safe to say the stars may be wearing some high-neck gowns, either covered in tassel fringe or metallic beads _ or both _ and maybe a peacock-blue, one-shouldered tulle gown worn over a fully embroidered gold-leaf illusion bodysuit that gave the appearance of glittering body art.


The real-people-in-the-pool print on Proenza Schouler’s catwalk Wednesday night probably took some fashion insiders _ who don’t expect that much newness during these previews _ by surprise.

The collection by Lazaro Hernandez and Jack McCollough started off by advancing some trends seen for spring, including leather, patchwork, some perforated and mesh textures. The leather was a little shinier, the patchwork a little more random and the textures a little more exaggerated, but, still, they fell in line.

The duo also offered skirt suits galore, but they weren’t trim and tailored; jackets were collarless and covered in snakeskin, and the skirts were slung low on the hips.

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