Ralph Rucci opted out of a runway show this season, which had both its negatives and its positives. His clothes have a lot of drama in them, and some of that got lost in his Broadway showroom.

On the other hand, feeling is believing, and Rucci uses some of the most sumptuous materials known to man. There were racks of double-face cashmere skirtsuits with his signature 3-D quilting techniques, but even more luxurious was a double-face alpaca jacket and coat with satin trapunto details.

You could have your pick of furs: Mink in both sheared and knit varieties was nice, but if you really want lavish, and Rucci's clients often do, there was an ivory bouclé coat fully lined in Mongolian lamb, modeled after a Chanel number that Coco was working on before she died. Rucci crafted another style from strips of Russian sable and leather braid; it was as warm as it was weightless.

In the mix were everyday dresses in wool ponte and "nun's veiling" sheer wool gauze. "Not every occasion is a state occasion," joked sales director John Lindsey, but occasion dressing is where Rucci's heart lies. For Fall, his strongest offering was also his simplest: a black silk velvet column gown with a horsehair back. It looked smashing under a leopard velvet coat he had specially loomed in Italy.