Behnaz Sarafpour has a knack for a little black dress. And the perfect topper. This season, the former came in jersey, cut like a second-skin trench, and the latter in a wool Empire silhouette with a face-framing Pierrot collar. There were other terrific items, too, including a cashmere cardigan overlaid with lace that was worn with Audrey Hepburn-esque tapering pants and flats, a short wool shift with puffed satin sleeves, and a pleated chiffon sheath. What these pieces had in common, right down to the palette of black, white, and heather gray, was their simplicity.

Would that Sarafpour had kept things simple. More decorative looks, like a plaid skirt with a lacy flower patched on its front, came across as prissy. Of course, ornamentation can be one of this designer's strong points. A trompe l'oeil bow tie that turned up on a silk top looked just as cute today as it did in her resort and spring collections. But that brings up a point: One would hate to see Sarafpour rest on her laurels. (Or those of other designers, for that matter: Some saw a hint of Lanvin in the velvet hourglass dresses and of vintage Thierry Mugler in the lace-up, stacked-heel boots they were paired with.) Hopefully, after a strong spring season, she is just taking a breather before refocusing her energies.