Oscar de la Renta began his condensed showroom presentation by distributing American-flag armbands to editors and buyers, and making sure models wore them with his outfits.

De la Renta's vibrant, positive collection was focused on daintily embroidered linen dresses, printed silk camisoles and gypsy-like ruffled skirts. Dreamy silk muslin petal dresses, officers' khaki cotton jackets and a striking palm-print jumpsuit brought to mind the tropical chic of colonial Indochine—by way of the Beverly Hills Hotel. For evening, eyelet blouses were paired with big, dramatic tulle skirts and accessorized with diamond-trimmed satin sandals. A double-faced charmeuse tuxedo with a white linen blouse was strikingly chic in its simplicity.

"When I started designing clothes I was full of spirit and passion," said the Dominican-born de la Renta. "Today, 35 years later, that joy is still there. I am glad that I came to this country and happy to be an American."