If you blinked at Martin Grant, you probably missed one of the most reality-worthy trompe l'oeil effects this season: a perfect little belted taffeta coat-dress designed with a front flap so as to look like a skirtsuit. Stick a fork in you, you're chic. It's the kind of precise, can't-fail piece that lands Lee Radziwill in Grant's front row every season.

But his major story for Spring was color, mostly yellow, to which the designer says he's usually averse. It was perfect in the zippy hem of a khaki trench, echoed in lemony Louboutin sandals below. However, in larger doses, you tripped over it. Still, a designer like Grant could easily coast on what he knows is proper. A push out of the comfort zone is a sign of life.

For evening, he kept lines long and a little bit disco with superwide silk jersey palazzo pants and jumpsuits masquerading as gowns, a continuation of last season's quest for ease. The former had a cool swagger when paired with a waist-shaping tuxedo vest. All that languid energy—not to mention those carefully placed slashes—significantly ramped up the sex appeal at a show where polish usually reigns. The most daring moment came before the car-wash gowns (an odd seventies aberration?) that closed the show: a sheer pleated gown with a sort of petal-shaped satin exoskeleton, certainly a dress where precision counts.