Welcome back, "design team." You have to feel a twinge of sympathy for the anonymous toilers at fashion's coal face, bearing the Jil Sander standard into an uncertain future. At least when there's an actual human being to take a bow at show's end, they can feel that their efforts aren't being entirely sublimated by the need to preserve continuity without promoting personality. What a strange state of affairs, especially when the name on the label has been such a distinctive, influential, un-anonymous force in fashion through the years of her tenure at her brand. And it continued to be so when Raf Simons was in charge.

So where—or to whom, or to what—does the "design team" owe allegiance now? The press notes (which at least acknowledged their existence) asserted their commitment to "restating the fundamental codes" of the label. That may have been why there was such an alt-Jil vibe about the show. Felted fabrics shaded with the merest suggestion of green or pink were scissored into the neutral, androgynous suits that her original fans craved.

In jersey, it could almost have been a new kind of track suit, with shoes—a flat platform, spiced up with colored python—to juice the impression. The cocooning comfort of the coats was on trend. And yet the dominant piece in the show might have been the sleeveless shift, bias-cut, gathered, and wrapped at the waist. It stood out because every time it came around, it was in an actual color instead of a bland hint at same. And that meant it underscored the repetitive element. Cultural shaman Brian Eno once declaimed that repetition of a thing changes it. The Jil Sander show refuted that claim. But let's not blame the "design team." They were just doing their jobs.