(1.) You’ll Get Reacquainted With Velvet.
The fabric of your childhood dressy-dress was everywhere. It has Anne Rice tendencies at Peter Som, but Vera Wang brings it safely to sunrise with a chaste olive suit.
(2.) You’ll Borrow From the Boys.
And think about Savile Row. At Ralph Lauren, the menswear trend meant gray; it meant pinstripes; it meant three not-so-easy pieces. For something less literal, throw a tweed jacket over Proenza Schouler’s mod, Paco Rabanne-y chain-mail tunics.
(3.)You’ll Pile It On.
There’s a lot of volume out there. Marc Jacobs occupied the extreme, with baby-doll dresses big enough to fit five, but Donna Karan, with her grandly proportioned, Romeo Gigli–inspired collection, was close behind. Carolina Herrera and Derek Lam brought a light touch to the new shape that makes it perfect for evening.
(4.) You’ll Be Inspired by Dr. Zhivago.
When velvet meets a tassel, “Lara’s Theme” is never far behind. Take inspiration from sixties peasant dressing: embroidery, embellishment, full skirts, and chunky jewelry.
(5.) You’ll Think About Mondrian.
There wasn’t a print in sight, but blocks of color did make appearances throughout the somber season. Oscar de la Renta widened his vivid stripes, while Proenza Schouler went for geometric greens.
(6.) Your Feet Can Relax.
Even for evening, even with socks, flats are the shoe of the season. At Oscar de la Renta, they were girlish and ballet slipper–esque, made from thick satin with a bow across the toes. Proenza’s take was far more “wrestling,” and Behnaz Sarafpour’s gold-and-silver bedouin slippers are certain to please the mobile.
(7.) You’ll Cinch It In.
As an antidote to all that volume, the corset appeared to remind us of the hourglass shape. It’s casual at Marc by Marc Jacobs; it’s formal at Narciso Rodriguez; and at Roland Mouret, who took an unusually slim approach to dressing, the corset was just as dishy as it could be.
(8.) You’ll Face Your Feelings About Fur.
Love it or hate it, fur is everywhere: in contrasting chevron patterns at J. Mendel and Marc Jacobs, in tidy windowpanes at Calvin Klein, and in heirloom-status chic at Carolina Herrera.
(9.) Missed Metallic? Here’s Another Chance to Shine.
For fall, consider it a layering piece (Derek Lam and Proenza Schouler). An opaquely metallic camisole is just right under a soft jacket. After dark, it can offer high-wattage chic, or a gentle twinkle.
(10.) You’ll Feel Like Empress Josephine.
Last season, we got a waist. This season, the northern migration continued. Evening dresses tended to stop just below the bust, giving way to a gentle, feminine billow.