A little-known fact about Chris Benz: He's a real estate addict who scouts properties in his free time. This goes a long way toward explaining his unusual choice of venues: For Fall it was a raw warehouse space in Chelsea that once stored road salt but became, in Benz's imagination, a guerilla club for the woman who wants "to escape into the darkness of downtown from her Upper East Side town house." She can run, but she can't hide, not if she's dressed by Chris Benz. His autumnal palette featured Yves Klein blue, yellow, and fire-engine red, applied to wools and cottons and even to metallic-foiled leather and fur.

As always, there were quirky takes on preppy staples, including an evening skirt done up in coppery sequins and paired with a charmeuse tee, an anorak of color-blocked sheared mink, and a blazer paired with a strapless peplum dress. These had less of a deliberate "granny's attic" quality than they had in the past, and more straightforward confidence. They were "designed," the J.Crew alum said, for people "to buy" (in other words, specifically with an eye toward what pieces had sold best in recent seasons). Are you listening, Michelle Obama?