Veronique Branquinho's work is a form of passive resistance to the onslaught of questionable trends. Others see young women dressing ultrasexy for spring? Really? Branquinho, a young woman herself, simply blanks that out as she continues to explore the idea of quiet strength.

That doesn't make her a total separatist, though. Her cool form of romanticism has taken fashion's current yen for soft and silky, and run it through fluid, vaguely '40s shapes like bodice-hugging dresses and asymmetrical skirts. There's a delicacy as well to the crisscross straps in her tops or a camisole covered with silver coins.

She loves to layer—putting a dress over cuffed trousers with leggings—which could be seen as a trifle stifling when bare skin is all around. But then again, summer in Antwerp is a different animal. And where Belgians lead, others have been known to follow.