Aside from the wafting dry-ice smoke and thumping techno, Christian Siriano
opened his show on a surprisingly untricky note—a stylish black-leather peplum jacket and pencil skirt that would elicit neither silly catchphrases nor eyebrow-raised double takes. Like it or not, this is Siriano's fourth outing on the non-Project
runway, and he's making an effort to transition from reality television into plain-old-vanilla reality. According to his notes, this collection was inspired by the head-to-toe propriety of European women in the sixties. And so the dramatics of seasons past were all but excised, leaving passably chic coats, cocktail frocks, blouses, and pencil skirts with a flourish here and there, but little to tell you about a designer's vision. (Not that we're encouraging the mad hattery of previous shows.) Backstage, Siriano said his niche was glamour, but to really move forward, he'll have to expand that one-dimensional notion into something more original and thoughtful.