There's no kind of collection harder for a reviewer to grapple with than one that's predictably competent. Today's Costello Tagliapietra was a classic of the genre: There's just not much to say about a group of expertly draped silk and jersey dresses except, well, that happened…again. Everyone knows that Jeffrey Costello and Robert Tagliapietra are very, very good at designing soigné, day-to-night draped dresses, and this season, that's what they did. Again. Some of the draped dresses were obi-belted; some of them came in watercolor prints that didn't quite gel. Some of them were in different colors, back-to-front. A few at the close of the show were done in satin, and consequently felt dressier and had a bit more structure. C'est tout.
The more interesting stuff to reckon with, here, were the looks outside of Costello and Tagliapietra's usual ken. There was an unexpected current of quirky granny chic in this collection, evidenced in cozy hand-knit sweaters and modest alpaca skirts and trousers; meanwhile, the prints that came off as a bit much in the dresses were used to nice, eccentric effect in a couple of layered button-downs. Costello and Tagliapietra are longtime residents of Brooklyn; perhaps now they've picked up an affection for the borough's dowdy-hipster aesthetic. Whatever the influence, it wasn't fully absorbed, though it was refreshing to see some experimentation on this runway.