September 07, 2007 New York
A former costume designer with a husband who is a film professor, Tfank likes to mine cinema history, and this season she found her spark in the dark-eyed elegance of Anouk Aimée, darling of the 1960's art house, star of Un Homme et Une Femme. The designer's stock-in-trade is opulent French and Italian fabrics, often rich brocades, beautifully cut into soigné silhouettes that recall a time when the women who wore hats weren't Mischa Barton or Ashley Olsen. Tfank added fluid jersey dresses to the final cut for the first time; it would be nice to see more such experiments in the future. The hushed scene and the models' ladylike pace allowed viewers time to study points of interest. Many of these came as models strode away: the low, curved nape of a jacket; the Watteau back of a dress. Like a well-timed dose of espresso, a nearly fluorescent geranium pink added a welcome jolt of color to the genteel palette of icy pales.