Fashion: The Poetics Of Style

No gimmicks. No logos. Just a sublime devotion to pure elegance

To enter into Geoffrey Beene's one and only shop, located on a relatively unhurried patch of Manhattan's Fifth Avenue, is to experience one man's extraordinary sense of rebellion and restraint. A small fraction of the size of the grand retail showplaces that line Madison Avenue one block to the east (Ralph Lauren, Giorgio Armani), Beene's store, which he visits daily, isn't meant to stand as a monument to its creator. At 70, Beene, unlike his peers, offers no secondary, lower-priced line (his clothes range from $1,500 to more than $10,000), no logoed handbags or housewares. Visit Beene's shop, and you realize...