Sleek, dark, graphic, sexy. For Fall 2003, Costume National designer Ennio Capasa did more of what he does best. Sensual silk dresses slunk their way down the models’ shoulders as they walked. Curve-hugging overcoats featured kinky corset bones and lingerie lacing. Skirts and dresses were short enough to cause serious gawking, if not a Fifth Avenue fender bender. Capasa’s love for noir was much in evidence—there was black leather, ebony jersey, deep-charcoal jacquard, and midnight mink—but shots of Easter-candy violet and deep peony pink provided welcome points of light.

At its strongest, the collection, which Capasa named “Digital Beauty,” gives modern urban women more of what they need (or, at least, want)—slim jackets, A-line skirts, printed dresses, great black pants. But at times the clothes crossed the line from chic and modern to futuristic and far-fetched. Stretch-leather jumpsuits, which fit like a latex glove, are perhaps best left to actual digital beauties like Tomb Raider’s Lara Croft.