Front-row fan Matthew Fox couldn't make his mind up which outfit he liked best. That would probably be the sane response of any man confronted with the range of options offered by Giorgio Armani in his signature collection. He opened with the urban formality of a tableau of suits, then quickly headed south for the summer, to islands like Pantelleria and Stromboli, where dressing is as easy as a pair of pajama-soft pants and a barely constructed velvet jacket. As usual, the jacket was the collection's building block, in everything from a silken herringbone to a summer-striped, elasticized-waist version, but this time the shirt was important, too, as a paradox: It made its presence felt by its absence.
In its place were easy shirt-jackets that did away with the need for anything underneath, or cropped waistcoats (the best with draped-scarf necklines), which temporarily raised the suspicion that the navel was Armani's focus for the season. When shirts did show up, they were collarless or baseball-style, or as light as voile. The palette was based on shades of stone and sea, except for blousons in woven alligator or taupe-y crocodile. They were a reminder that Armani is perfectly capable of injecting a note of slightly decadent luxe into all that warm-weather airiness.