NEW YORK—Narciso Rodriguez says he's always been one to design in black and white. This time, he wanted to mix it up a little.

"The core of my life is black and white. I wanted to turn it around and celebrate color," he said after his runway show Tuesday night. "It's not a departure—it's an evolution."

He signaled that evolution by opening his show with four items in bright red—a couple of red wool coats, a couple of red wool dresses.

"There are so many beautiful shades of red," he said. "So many beautiful colors."

Rodriguez's well-received collection was full of easy-fitting garments—finely tailored, but with room to move in. "I wanted an easy, relaxed silhouette," he said.

The collection also featured subtly glamorous embroidered and beaded dresses—never too much to overtake the garment, though. They came in colors like bronze and silver.

"It's so great to celebrate the craft," he said of the delicate embroidery. "These are old-world traditions."