Some might complain that Ann Demeulemeester never changes, but her most ardent fans—arty types who could clock the Kara Walker reference on one of her graphic prints at 20 paces—would argue right back that the naysayers are simply not paying close enough attention. There was a billowy new volume to the hems of jackets and shirts layered over reliably cool trousers, some of them tucked into knee-high boots. Call it a bubble, and a major development for the dark queen of slouch. And those were sequins covering a pair of her signature vests. The collection had even lighter moments, too, like an ivory duster and a white tail coat with contrasting trim, and the models' matching powdered 'dos.

But no, Demeulemeester hasn't abandoned black. She used it as a layering device (ribbed knits worn under waistcoats and below floaty tops of tulle) and as an accent (see the oversize lamb mufflers). She knows her way around a shaggy fur, which makes Fall her moment. Of the scores seen on the runways these last few weeks, her vest, longer in front than back, stands out. Why? Years of practice.