But the designer signaled on Tuesday evening, as a select crowd of loyal customers and media packed into his studio for his runway show, that he wants to also satisfy a customer looking for some edge—if not TOO much.
There were very wide black leather pants paired with a mink jacket in black and white—with a blue collar. There was a cream shearling jacket paired with charcoal pants, and black-and-white booties.
And while you may not think of de la Renta as a studded motorcycle jacket kind of guy, he is: his version came in a form-fitting suit, with a laser-cut, gold-studded leather jacket and skirt. Black suede boots finished off the look.
One sensed, though, that everyone was truly waiting for the gowns that came later in the show, and they were, not surprisingly, impressive. There was a daringly sheer black tulle dress with black sequins and lace. Another black tulle number had a gold foil print.
Two dresses actually made their own music: tulle gowns, one in gold and one in silver, embroidered with lacquered feathers and enough beads to create that striking sound effect.
The piece de resistance: worn by supermodel Karlie Kloss (outfitted in a cute, short wig): a sumptuous painted polka dot ruffle gown in black and white.
Afterward, among the well-wishers patiently waiting their turn, was Barbara Walters.
"This is the only fashion show I go to," she said. "Why? Because I wear his clothes all the time."