It’s tempting, sometimes, in the course of a long run of fashion shows, to sum up a collection by listing its component parts: There were ruffles, there were bright colors, there were exposed seams, there was fluffiness. You get the gist of the clothes that way, but miss the gestalt. In the case of Cédric Charlier’s latest outing, though, it seems fair to view the collection myopically, as the parts were essentially the point. This compelling show ran in passages, each emphasizing one sartorial element. At the top, focusing on tailoring, Charlier laid on the effect of turning his jackets and dresses inside out, elaborating the internal seams with light-catching bugle bead embroidery. By the end of the show the subject was ruffles—a “landscape of ruffles,” as Charlier put it later, that made his otherwise nonchalant tops and skirts take on a sculptural force. In the interim there was color, one of Charlier’s strong suits, as well as feral textures of eyelash and knit fringe, and soft, sensual draping. The frankness of Charlier’s approach had a lot of appeal, even if some pieces—like the vaguely tribal knits—crossed over into a kind of mannered naïveté. The standouts were the ruffled pieces, which were emphatic and distinctive but in an entirely approachable way. That’s the Charlier sweet spot—and this collection was pretty sweet indeed.

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