Strong women abound for Spring 2001—but few look tougher or sexier than Demeulemeester's chic-punk chicks. Black isn't back for these ready-to-rumble types; it never went away.

Metallic band straps literally held together Demeulemeester's collection: Loose blazers were cinched with built-in belts that could be fastened tightly around the waist or left to hang around the hips. Hair pieces were draped over dresses and attached at the neck. And there were several sensational miniskirts made entirely of—what else? —metal snaps, which can be fastened as tightly or loosely as the moment calls for. Demeulemeester rounded off her collection with less aggressive but equally intriguing tie-dyed suede suits and skirts, knit sweaters with wide, loose sleeves and comfortably flared trousers. In short, the urban warrior's modern wardrobe.

Ann Demeulemeester proved that she is a designer who can constantly find new ways to reinvent herself; there is always more to her designs than meets the eye.