To the romantic South American tune of Tuyo Es Mi Corazón, the downtown design team of Daphne Gutierrez and Nicole Noselli opened New York Fashion Week with a carefully planned, immaculately executed collection (sponsored by Shishido), that delivered a thoroughly modern idea of chic.

This fall, Bruce girls will still rely on those well-known slim trousers that lengthen the legs for miles—only now they're done in the softest possible corduroy, and paired with delicately draped tops, fitted blazers with pleated lapels and formfitting leather jackets. For drinks on the town, there are sexy jersey dresses that allude to the current Grecian craze but avoid falling into a facile disco-princess retro vibe, thanks to their looser cut and smart touches like asymmetric necklines, gathered sleeves and embroidered details.

"The general look is very linear, but manipulated to create movement and follow the natural draping of the fabric," said Gutierrez before the show. "The effect is very subtle from a distance, but when you inspect the clothes up close, you realize there's a tremendous amount of work involved."