Oscar de la Renta
September 11, 2005 New York
With the Williams sisters, Eva Longoria, Candace Bushnell, and Donald and Melania Trump watching from the front row, de la Renta played to his strengths: flounces galore, toreador jackets, and a spicy palette of marigold, red, and warm neutrals, often finished off with a smattering of crystal embroidery. For day, wooden beading at the hip or contrast piping along seams gave classic silhouettes a sprightly flare, but beige linen suits and bouclé tweeds won't disappoint his faithful league of ladies.
As for eveningwear, Oscar gave the women what they want, from knee-length Audrey Hepburn black sheaths to a taffeta Empire gown painted with watercolor blossoms. For occasions that call for something in between, he did silk chiffon halter-neck dresses, with daring keyhole cutouts. He even reprised last season's T-shirt and ball skirt on Jacquetta Wheeler. Yes, there were many commercial moments, which isn't a bad thing. But at 75 looks, the show could've used some editing. All told, an Oscar collection is like a trip to the Prado. Faced with such an embarrassment of riches, it's too easy to miss the many fine things.