Latest in an ever-lengthening line of extraordinary inspirations for Spring 2012: the Dutch artist M.C. Escher. Stuart Vevers found out it was the 75th anniversary of Escher's trip to Alhambra in Granada, where the artist's sketches of tiles became the basis for some of his most famous mind-twisting games with perspective. That Spanish connection was all that was needed for Vevers to launch his new collection for Loewe.

Escher's maths-influenced motifs were reproduced in engineered prints on silk skirts and tops or cut out of leather pieces. Lizards, another of the artist's visual signatures, also appeared as prints or beaded in black on gray suede. They didn't really say Loewe-style luxury.

But with the core of Loewe's business being leather goods, Vevers' challenge with a Spring collection is always going to be how to make skins lighter. He was proud of the fact that the Loewe workshops had come up with a reversible nappa that was the lightest yet. He cut it into a shorts suit or a button-through shirtdress. He also laced leather with tiny perforations, as in a skirt and matching sleeveless top.

But something about the long lean silhouette conspired against the lightness Vevers sought. Paired with the vintage-looking platform sandals, there was a vampish, film noir-ish edge to the Loewe woman this season, especially when she zipped herself into a gold leather pencil skirt with a substantial kick pleat. Un peu old-fashioned.