Michael and Nicole Colovos picked a perfect day for their show. On the Sunday of New York Fashion Week, buyers and editors tend to dress down, and many in the audience were sporting versions of the looks on Habitual's runway. That's not to say the husband and wife team's collection hasn't grown since they moved in 2002 to Los Angeles in an expansionist mood. On the contrary, the duo have added leather to their repertoire, in the form of great ankle and knee-high boots and belts, not to mention second-skin pants and ruffle-front jackets that marry sexy with just the right touch of sweet.

But denim is the foundation of the line, and the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund runners-up cut it every which way but loose. There were skinny jeans and fuller styles, pegged skirts and flared ones. On top, single- and double-breasted jackets, some of which were piped in velvet, were cut close to the body and worn with hippie shirts layered over satin-trim tanks or turtlenecks in a muted palette of gray, dark brown, purple, and green. Some in the audience found the presentation repetitive, while others longed for some more styling flash. But most, there's little doubt, were making mental notes about their must-haves for fall.