Of the three labels Karl Lagerfeld heads up, the one that bears his own name is, if not necessarily the closest to his heart, then the closest to his own closet. There was something vaguely military and distinctly mannish about the black and blue and army-drab tailored pieces and the flat new-wave boots with which they were worn. Compared with the funnel-neck coats and the boxy jackets, with their strong rounded shoulders, an abbreviated shirtdress that flared over short shorts and a jumper with a tucked bubble hem looked refreshingly female.

What kept the collection from going over to the dark side were the kittenish accessories: fishnet underpinnings, lace stockings, and neon driving gloves (fingerless, natch) with talonlike press-on nails. And while it was executed with martial austerity, Lagerfeld didn┐t completely resist the temptation to embellish. A pair of sexy sheaths were a graphic mix of matte and shine. And tulle dresses (ranging from a blouson to a long halter to a sleeveless shift worn over skinny pants) were embroidered with sequins in patches. Nothing masculine about that.