Christian Lacroix can usually be trusted to whip up a kaleidoscopic color-storm for his ready-to-wear collections, but for fall he held back and delivered a muted collection full of black, bordeaux and bois de rose pink.

Judging from the German cabaret music on the soundtrack, the designer's focus seems to have shifted from the sunny south to the faded decadence of northern Europe. Always a romantic though, Lacroix cut a recurring silhouette with a full skirt and a tiny jacket—whether a bolero or biker style—on top. He showed his taste for complex textures, embellishment and print in a slew of lace, devore velvet, ruching and patchwork, all done with an antiqued, slightly distressed look.

The best moments of the collection were the delicate pinks, the pretty sparkling tulle fairy dresses and the canvas arts-and-crafts painting and embroidery on the outside of a fur-lined coat and jacket.