The square sequin embroideries at Matthew Williamson looked almost exactly like circuitry. And though the reference didn't always hit you over the head, a sort of space-age chill settled itself over Williamson's traditional embellishments, color, and glamour. Though when it comes to a bona fide chill, there wasn't much here in the way of things to keep you warm. If only a girl could afford the go-for-broke fabulous pastel rainbow fox coat that opened the show. Then again, this year New Yorkers have all but skirted a real winter. You have to ask: Are coats always necessary in a Fall collection?
Williamson's cocktail dresses are his bread and butter. Here they came in two shapes, a great straight-cut organza T-shirt with those circuit sequins, sometimes turned slightly more casual layered over a long-sleeve top. On the sexier, more structured side was a silhouette with slashes at the ribcage and a skirt that was cut into and paneled like a machine. It was an idea that reached its full potential in a blessedly unadorned but sparkly midnight jacquard.
Williamson is celebrating his 15th anniversary this year, which perhaps accounts for his futuristic focus. At times it was a clunky marriage of worlds—see the brocade skirt pieced with gold leather and worn with a Star Trek-like turquoise turtleneck and organza T-shirt. A gold silk blazer over ice blue trousers, in contrast, hit the right note. When it came to evening, Williamson splashed swishing gowns in baroque prints with great zigs of bright comic-book color. It made his models look like superheroines, about to take flight to the ball.