"This season, it's less about a certain travel or inspiration," Adam Lippes said at his showroom, "It's about the girl being refined, but still at ease." That refinement can possibly be traced to Lippes' booming business in London, which includes recent launches at Harrods and Browns. A focus on relaxation, meanwhile, is not hard to achieve in his serene new studio overlooking the Hudson.

Whatever the origin of his ideas, Lippes turned out sleek long gowns—including a great strapless red crepe number—paired with flat sandals; bright yellow sweater sets; an inky silk shirtdress; and a pair of cotton jackets that could effortlessly take the wearer everywhere, or nowhere, as the case may be. It's this kind of real-life approach to dressing that should continue to spell fair weather ahead for the brand on either side of the Atlantic.