Were those curtain swags decorating the hem of a minidress? As a matter of fact, yes. Backstage at her show, Anna Sui explained that she began working on Fall by looking at pre-Pop Andy Warhol and other commercial artists, and that afterward she became interested in interiors. "I put all of my favorite objects into the prints," she said. So, bits of furniture decorated a silk charmeuse dress, newspaper print showed up on a crepe de chine number, and wool knits came appliquéd with sewing notions.

As a concept, Victorian chairs aren't as compelling as, say, Marie Antoinette at a New York Dolls concert (one theme from last season). And as a collection, it didn't have the same spunk as some of Sui's earlier efforts. But there's always something to like in the designer's magpie piles of coats, sweaters, and frocks. Lacquered-silk anoraks layered under smocks or jumpers gave the show a sportier than usual edge. A pair of black lace party dresses—worn, in keeping with the trend, over fitted turtlenecks—looked like winners. And her silver-fox patchwork coat was so chic that even those furniture tassels could be forgiven.