City flowers. It's how Jeffrey Costello and Robert Tagliapietra—with a little poetry from Georgia O'Keeffe, cited in their show notes—have viewed their dresses since day one. The pair is on the side of evolution over revolution, and they found themselves revisiting core values like romanticism and femininity.

Both themes were present in the classic dresses here—some in jersey, others in satin—whether expertly bow-tied and bloused or sewn into twisty gathers at the waist. The difference was in the details of an asymmetrical keyhole cutout or a new silhouette that creates chic, full, soft drapes around the hips. This season's crop of prints were also fresh, including a couple of smudgy, painterly florals that looked like peeling walls, and another with stenciled leaves, particularly lovely on a bell-sleeved forties-inspired number. Costello Tagliapietra has a deceptively simple formula that adds up to pretty, not precious.