For the Ralph Lauren Fall 2014 runway show, the designer introduced a new Polo collection for women. The first twenty-five looks of the show were Polo label, and it was a diverse offering. After more than four decades in business, Lauren bridges worlds. There were serape blanket coats and distressed leather bombers, a pinstripe suit, athletic outerwear in acid hues, and even what looked like a nod to grunge in the tweedy tailoring he mixed with floral silk dresses and plaid scarves. All recognizably Lauren but with a casual, easy spirit that was unusual for the designer’s fashion week runway.

The lights dimmed in between the show’s first and second acts, but there was no mistaking Polo for the Ralph Lauren portion of this outing, which was as elegant as they come, and the designer’s finest work in some time. Even his jogging pants looked refined. He put an emphasis on the tactile pleasures that clothing as fine as his can produce, opting for a soothing monochrome palette of pastels and grays and rich materials like cashmere, brushed suede, satin pongee, and Mongolian lamb.

That easeful mood carried over from day to evening, where a snug turtleneck paired with a long jersey skirt slit all the way up one leg looked new for Lauren. Silk jersey also found its way onto gowns, although the best look was a little more formal.