There was both rain and rush hour to contend with, but the Rucci faithful, including Amy Fine Collins and Martha Stewart, all made it to see their guy—now back in New York after a two-season decampment to Paris. Today he further developed the study in transparency and texture he began in his Fall 2008 collection. It's a clear move forward for a designer who can get bogged down by architecture and overlooked by those who don't consider that their cup of fashion tea.

Rucci applied his fresh notions throughout—first to his classics, lightening up the arcing seams of sculptural suits and dresses with horsehair insets, and then pushing into new territory with geometric insets of wool on sheer tulle. The effect was both modern and, yes, kind of sexy. Rucci's Resort collection, shown in June, included some beautiful dresses that would appeal to the junior set. There were more here, including polished white shirtdresses, coquettishly winking bits of skin through sliced seams. A standout black sequin jacket and skinny, floor-length skirt had a dark, louche appeal, while a fuchsia party dress with a back of riblike cutouts almost had the sci-fi edge of McQueen. These numbers—each a nice counterpoint to the concept-laden, intellectual heft that gets the likes of Stewart and Collins clapping—may help Rucci broaden his audience.