Osman Yousefzada is one of those London designers who collects celebrity clients like stamps: Amber Heard, Emily Watson, Selena Gomez, and Beyoncé all wear his clothes on the red carpet and in everyday life, and he has proven he can design for a wide range of shapes, sizes, and ages. Still, when the show notes for Osman's Spring outing said the collection would be a bit of East meets West, a bit of the Raj, veterans in the crowd went into brace position: After all, how many times has a designer promised to take people on a magic carpet ride to Rajasthan, visiting some festooned and fragrant royal court? As it turned out, Osman's collection featured impressive clothes that avoided the heady, pungent, embellished looks that designers often churn out when their thoughts turn to India.

The first outfit was a skirt laid over a trouser, teamed with a tank top with the minutest of gold embroidery details; it was followed by a kimono-sleeve white trouser look. Then came splendid prints and color combos: "a tree of life" in the hues of a Serengeti sunset mixed surprisingly with a sharp duck-egg blue skirt. There were some intricate lace details in white that were reminiscent of the latticework of doors found in Rajasthan castles, and some trousers with a fan-pleated, cummerbund-esque waist, but the use of the references was subtle and discreet.

In addition to the prints, there were interesting fabrics and textures: a beaded clutch, a denim trouser that masqueraded as silk, a sturdy sweatshirt combined with a lattice silk lace skirt. Design details were also strong: a bandeau, a cutaway at the waist, a tie detail at the back of a blouse. Toward the end of the show, a model came down the runway with a bright tangerine sash diagonal to her body—like, say, a pageant queen. Did Osman know that, the previous night, the first woman of Indian heritage had won Miss America? "No," he said. "But it's bloody well about time."