La Colombe d'Or, hidden in the cool hilltops above Nice, is one of Catherine Malandrino's favorite hotels. It's a famously charming spot, beloved by artists past and present, where you can sleep with a Modigliani above your head or eat wild mushrooms under a mural by Léger. It was there that she began to weave the story of her Spring show.

It's no surprise then that Malandrino returned in a big way to the craft touches with which she first made her name (she had shied away in the last couple of seasons). Organza was geometrically pleated or cut into trapunto scallops. Beading came in hefty grape clusters on necklines and sleeves. There was more texture in pointelle knits, embroidered boleros, and gowns in bright draped and pleated chiffon. It all got a bit much, actually, especially when you throw in massive blouson sleeves, voluminous palazzo pants, and linebacker shoulder ruffles.

The more literal art references, such as an organza blouson with a watercolor print, will likely have a hard time finding a customer. The art-meets-fashion gambit never fails to make for an interesting magazine item, but does a woman really want to wear a painting?