Stella McCartney pushed her signature masculine/feminine mix to extremes for Fall. "I wanted to take it to the next level," she said backstage. "You can get stuck in one mode." McCartney has staked out a territory that's all about sexy ease. Good for her for taking a leap today, but not every look landed on solid ground.

The most recognizable element of the McCartney oeuvre, the sharply tailored pantsuit, got plenty of runway time, but it took on proportions that can only be likened to David Byrne in Stop Making Sense mode. Other pieces received the super-size treatment, as well: Shawl-collar winter coats came with sloping shoulders; a sporty bomber was elongated to practically the knees. Along similar lines, the gold laminated texturized knits and the Issey Miyake pleats had a sculptural quality, but whereas the former looked stiff, the latter felt softer, more womanly. And if you thought last season's citrus motif was loud, it had nothing on the gold Mylar print that was used for another big suit.

Representing the feminine side of the story were polka dots, embroidered onto ivory tulle T-shirts layered over a pair of trousers or peeking out beneath the hem of a smoking jacket. Alternatively, they were inset into curvy black dresses as stretchy, transparent point d'esprit. These, like the sleeveless seamed hourglass dresses with the peplums in front, more reliably captured the sexy McCartney spirit.