Think farther back than Hollywood's golden age, farther back than Art Deco â¿¿ even farther back than the Edwardian era. Packham's fall collection was based on noble 17-century Parisians, the women who would gather in their salons to discuss literature, politics and art.

"These women were educated, wealthy and influential â¿¿ they even liked politics. They were like early feminist groups," joked Packham backstage.

It seems they got to do quite a bit of lounging, and that came through in some of Packham's dressing gowns, robe-style silhouettes and powder-colored satins. They also knew how to ramp it up without ever being inappropriate. Packham played with that by showing some body-hugging looks that had high necks and keyhole slashes.

She also put a twist on the beaded gown, covering the whole thing in an extra layer of tulle, which added dimension and a little bit of mystery.

TORY BURCH

Burch has a confession she shared on the runwy: "I love bugs â¿¿ at least from a design standpoint."

She decorated a chiffon button-down shirt with scarabs and used jeweled ones on a silk skirt. Embellished dragonflies were subtly placed on some of the shoes â¿¿ remember Burch's roots are in accessories â¿¿ making them an instant, must-have status symbol.

But Burch didn't go looking in dark corners for inspiration. She tried to envelop metallic fabrics, the textures of Gustav Klimt's portraits and a free-spirited mood all into the overarching theme of Art Nouveau.

She found inspiration in many weekend outings to The Neue Galerie. "I was an art history major. ... I just like to go to see the Klimts. I love his attention to color, detail and texture."

RODARTE

Design sisters Laura and Kate Mulleavy grew up in sunny Santa Cruz, Calif., and evoked their seaside hometown in their fall collection.

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