Should we be getting used to Max the minimalist? Perhaps. Mr. Azria and his wife, Lubov, seem to have found a real affinity for simplicity. Earlier this week, their BCBG Max Azria collection was a parade of clean-lined, neutral looks. Last Fall's Max Azria collection was relatively free of frippery, and it was followed up today with a series of fluid but austere looks in hushed and dreamy pales like blush, mint, dove gray, and Champagne.
The focus here was on a dress that hovers just below the knee or farther and channels a dancer's athleticism and grace. The Azrias aimed to hold your interest with the geometry of sliced cutouts, thin crisscrossing straps, and linear piping experiments. The strategy proved successful. Still, the points of departure, like a couple of great slouchy silk crepe suits, were welcome. The twin ghosts of Helmut Lang and Calvin Klein collections past rattled around the edges. That's not a criticism. You could have worse references. It will be interesting to see where this new direction takes the Azrias.