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Nanette Lepore Successfully Walks The "Mormon Line"

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Photo credit: Getty Images

A few weeks ago, we toured Nanette Lepore's design studio and caught a glimpse of her Fall 2012 collection. We were asked not to take any photos of the still in progress designs then, but now that she's shown at Fashion Week, you can see the looks for yourselves. We think you'll agree it was well worth the wait.

While Tibi, Milly and DVF, three lines known for great prints, shied away from their signature looks this season, Nanette Lepore had no such qualms. She reveled in using her incredibly bold tarot-inspired patterns. The color palette of both her prints and solids included chartreuse, mulberry, cyan and flame. The collection also incorporated a few gold lamé pieces, including a pair of to-die-for trousers, which Elvis would have appreciated (although more so if he'd have been a woman with really good taste).

Although the Nanette Lepore brand is known for creating clothes that are stylishly feminine, the designer explained to us before the show why her Oscar Wilde dandy-inspired collection veered in a somewhat new direction:

The feeling of movement and oversize flounces were the only nods to femininity, because we're in a more buttoned up, less overtly sexy time for fashion. I do have some minis, because on the runway they make more of an impact, but lengths are actually more modest, hovering around the knee. And there are no plunging necklines out there anymore, so it's a little bit of a challenge to walk the Mormon line. I think we got it.We think they did too—keeping in mind, however, that "less femininity" is relative. Since these designs are by Nanette Lepore, they're still very beautiful and bound to draw plenty of positive attention from admirers of both sexes.

We don't usually pay too much attention to the accessories at runway shows, unless they really jump out at us. Once again, just like last season, Nanette's shoes really did. This time around, models wore metallic heels and flats. The heels were great, but it was the flats that mesmerized us. These days it's nearly impossible to find really cool flats, so seeing these colorful metallic loafers and Mary Janes was like stumbling on a stylish oasis.

As usual, the Nanette Lepore front row boasted one of the week's more interesting celeb rosters. Guests included Erica Dasher and India de Beufort, the stars of Jane By Design, which Nanette recently made a guest appearance on. Joining them were Oscar nominee Stanley Tucci, Arianna Huffington, Kristin Chenoweth, Mickey Boardman, Gossip Girl stars Kelly Rutherford and Matthew Settle, and a man whom none of the women and few of the men in the audience could overlook, the extremely handsome Tyson Beckford.

· Nanette Lepore [Official Site]
· Nanette Lepore Gives Us a Studio Tour, Drinks Bloody Marys [Racked]
· All Fashion Week Fall 2012 Coverage [Racked]