Last season, Costume National was the fashion world's version of "Splice," as Ennio Capasa used nanotechnology to blend different materials like leather and wool. It was an interesting idea that could have been explored further, but for Spring 2011 he chose a new challenge, which he called "organic futurism."

Capasa took the tenets of traditional Italian tailoring and laser-cut and thermo-welded them into submission. That meant jackets and coats weren't stitched, and therefore had no seams. Pockets were attached via heat-sealing, and buttonholes were laser-cut. The result was clothing that looked familiar, yet felt odd. Though there were some missteps—like a collar and tie mysteriously veiled in gauzy polyester—most of the pieces rewarded scrutiny. On closer examination, a white satin tuxedo jacket turned out to have edges scorched brown by the kiss of the laser. As dark as that sounds, the collection was airier than typical Costume National, thanks to sand-toned linens, organza T-shirts, and a light hand with fabrics; one blazer with a wool front turned to reveal a back of sheer silk. Organic futurism, indeed.