They were, by definition and design, simple, elegant and chic.
Rodriguez is never much of an over-offender of bells, whistles and gimmicks, but he turned out a spring collection of pared-down, well-cut, wearable clothes — or they would be if the hemlines were a bit longer.
"I want you to leave here saying, 'I want the clothes,' 'I want those shoes,' 'I love that dress,'" Rodriguez said in a backstage interview.
He added, "Sometimes fashion is made for fantasy ... but I want to dress women."
The goal seems possible based on the spring collection he previewed for editors, stylists and retailers who made the Tuesday-night trip to a studio space on Manhattan's far West Side.
Rodriguez didn't bow to the trend of a looser shape; his silhouettes were trim and unfussy, his signature. They weren't constricting or boring, though.
He used the graphic play of black and white to his advantage, opening the show with a shorts suit that had white wool on the shoulders, a black laminated inset on the bodice and black laminated wool shorts. He added wisps of fabric to some of his pastel-shaded dresses to trail gently behind the models. A light yellow silk crepe dress was so gently draped, it was sexy. There also were ultra-light slip-style tops and dresses.
Rodriguez did offer some prints that he literally put under a microscope to develop: He looked at crystals and shark skin, blew them up and colored them in copper.
"Today, everyone wants to be famous and loud. They are famous for not doing anything. ... I prefer a simpler life," he said. Bravo.