September 11, 2009 New York
Rucci's program notes said he was inspired by Pina Bausch, the choreographer who died in June. While the silk gazar dresses screen-printed with her likeness seemed a shade much, there was an appealing lightness to many other pieces in the collection. A pale gray chiffon softly A-line dress pintucked into delicate narrow columns would make a fine choice for a starlet hoping to land her first grown-up role. And a tank dress embroidered all over with silk tulle paillettes that shaded from white through gray to black would be a kick to wear on the red carpet.
That's not to say there wasn't plenty to please established clients like Stewart or the socialite Deeda Blair, who sat across the runway. A black braided chiffon skirtsuit lightly embellished with ostrich feathers and worn with a sparkling white shell looked smart. A vanilla double-faced wool crepe dress-and-coat set with geometric tulle insets, meanwhile, had Michelle Obama's name written all over it. That, as every designer knows, would be the ultimate celebrity placement.