NEW YORK - Victoria Beckham kicked off Valentine's Day at New York Fashion Week by sending a boyish yet fine-tailored feminine collection down the runway, supported by her famous family and winning lavish praise.
Vogue editor in chief Anna Wintour led fashionistas braving minus 12 degrees Celsius (11 degrees Fahrenheit) to scurry inside and warm up in the neo-Renaissance surroundings of the Cipriani event space in Manhattan's Financial District for the fall/winter 2016 collection.
Models strode the carpeted runway in checks, houndstooth and stripes in a collection that showcased Beckham's increasingly sophisticated and evolving personal style, her Spice Girls days long gone.
Her football superstar husband David sat in the front row, smiling with pride and cradling their couple's young daughter Harper on his lap with sons Brooklyn, Romeo and Cruz looking dapper to his left.
Beckham's answer to wrapping up warm is layering up, so spaghetti strap dresses were paired with luscious ribbed knits, checked double-breasted coats with ribbed sleeves and knitted leggings.
The design staple of black and white was livened up with orange, green, browns and blues, with stunning fur bags as accessories.
"I don't know what to say, I feel quite overwhelmed, so I'm really happy," said the English designer backstage after winning praise from style editors, dressed unusually casually in white sneakers, tailored dark trousers and an oversized white sweater.
There were heritage houndstooth coats with waxed cord embroidery detail, which took five days each to make by hand.
"There are some more masculine fabrics, which I've used," she told reporters.
"It feels like a very feminine collection to me but I love adding those menswear elements to really toughen it up."
Beckham, whose second store opens in Hong Kong in weeks following the success of her Mayfair boutique in London, said she used light fabrics to take into consideration her clients in different climates.
"Asia is my fastest-growing market," Beckham told AFP.
"I really love Asian women, I feel that they really understand fashion and it seemed like the perfect place for the second store."
There were coats galore but also plenty of bare shoulders.
"I think it's nice to show what's going on underneath, and the layering of the knitwear and the bodices that I think are really strong," she said.
"I just wanted to look at what I've worn and what I love and just rework those pieces to make them feel new and fresh, and just show how my personal style has evolved."
One well-wisher presented her with a beautifully crafted posy of pink and white roses backstage and wished her a happy Valentine's Day.
But when asked if she had special plans later Sunday, the 41-year-old mother of four said: "I'll be working!"
Other highlights of Fashion Week day four are catwalk collections from Diane von Furstenberg and Prabal Gurung. Here is a roundup of what was on offer late Saturday:
Italy-based label Moncler, which specializes in luxury outerwear, held an open-air fashion show defying sub-freezing temperatures on one of the coldest nights New York has seen in 20 years.
At the Lincoln Center plaza outside the Metropolitan Opera House, models dressed in royal blue retro ski outfits with matching hats, eyes masks, and black knee-high socks and black shoes marched in military formation, crisscrossing in an out of different lines.
They provided a marching backdrop for models dressed in more neutral palates wearing oversized fur gloves and fur boots with skimpy cut, sexy Alpine coats, leggings and luxuriant hats.
Inspired by characters of American film director Jim Jarmusch, French designer Joseph Altuzarra unveiled a striking collection that combined 19th century textiles with Indian designs, Venetian pearls, as well as Moroccan and Turkish folk costumes.