There's something devilishly beguiling in meeting fashion's demands with matching madness. "Everybody was going crazy this summer with the heat wave," Chris Benz said at his presentation. "We were all in the studio, and I just decided to go with it. It's Andy Warhol's superstars go to Coney Island, with a nod to candy kids." That fantasy played out in trippy florals and sixties-inflected prints in lime green, neon pink (to match the designer's dyed hair), and sherbet orange. If the eye wasn't already boggled, then there were the optic black-and-white circular patterns on textured cotton matelassé.
In contrast to the unabashed prints, the designs were much more modest. Benz liked the idea of "messing with the Upper East Side lady" ("perhaps the craziest of them all," he said), and hemlines ran below the knee and necklines hovered high up. The best looks, though, had a slouchier feel. In one refreshing pairing, a bright sky blue silk tunic topped a loose pair of heavily beaded Kelly green drawstring pajama pants. Styled with a pair of sneakers made in collaboration with designer Alejandro Ingelmo, it got the gist of rich-woman eccentricity.