"Modern is for today," Karl Lagerfeld said before his show, emphasizing his in-the-moment view of fashion, but the collection he showed under his own name impressively encompassed past, present, and future. Though the designer also featured a swingy A-line shape (in winter white, say, with silver piping and zip), the silhouette that mattered was streamlined to the nth. It was composed of a rigorously tailored jacket, its front folded back to create a kind of angular peplum, worn over a second-skin skirt-and-pants combination in a new kind of patent leather that had a flawless vinyl finish (in brown, it looked unsettlingly like chocolate). The patent was also used to line lapels or those folded jacket fronts. But equally, many of Lagerfeld's details harked back to history, like the corset detailing on one jacket or the buttons that ran up to the elbow on the sleeve of another. One navy jacket with a little stand-up collar was piped in red like a vintage military uniform. The puff of black netting on a one-shouldered silk dress added a fin de siècle touch, of old Vienna perhaps. The beaded or pleated chiffons that made up the finale had that same feel, even when worn over patent pants. The bands that held hair high off the forehead added inches of height to models who were already towering. Backstage, they set Lagerfeld to thinking about the Na'vi and Avatar and maybe even a collection of KL in 3-D eyewear.