FOR the summer, Ralph Lauren loosens up, increasing its options and highlighting individuality. Light, easy layers and softer, more casual, clothes are the hallmark of this collection which gives women the freedom to experiment with classic, modern styles. Ralph Lauren's Collection emphasises the eclectic, the romantic and the bohemian. The blend of elements shows a freer, more informal approach. Silk floral print dresses are worn layered over black lace-knit camisoles with black tights and platform lace-up shoes. Dresses are sometimes layered by colour, or worn open over pyjama-style pants with head wraps and long strands of semi-precious beads. Take, for example, a navy and white floral dress. It is partially buttoned, a midriff-baring with striped T-shirt and striped silk pyjama pants. Further, a sheer navy ruffle front dress covers a striped T-shirt. Berets, knit and platform espadrilles complete the youthful look. Day suits see skirts and dresses which are long and lean. Pleated pants are full through the leg and cuffed. Jackets are fitted over skinny, striped silk T-shirts. Elsewhere in the range, a long, cream wool, sleeveless crepe dress floats unbuttoned over a black and white striped silk pyjama pants. Suits come in colours of cocoa, putty, navy and light blue. Fitted, embroidered white linen jackets are combined with pinstripe pants and berets. As the day fades, some dresses for black tie parties are unconventional and alluring. Simple black georgette gowns, or transparent layers of black or cream give the relaxed ease of daytime dressing. Black silk georgette dresses with fringed bottoms are finished with strands of long jet beads and black chiffon head wraps. Sportswear elements, such as classic Navajo blanket patterns, appear on lightweight silk knit shawls worn over flowing black jersey pants. Pyjama dressing moves from the beach to the casino with embroidered cream silks which culminate in layers of cream mousseline over a man's satin vest. Meanwhile, a beaded cream silk georgette dress is worn with long ropes of pearls. Lauren casts his classics in navy, red and white. A long, breezy navy and white floral skirt is worn with a skinny ribbed navy cardigan sweater, a navy and white striped tee, platform hemp espadrilles and a kerchief knotted to one side of the neck. A red and white striped broadcloth shirt dress is belted and worn open, over navy rayon racing shorts and a navy tank. Navy and white dresses in opaque fabrics float softly around bare legs for a fluid, warm-weather look. Using layers of coral, raspberry and amethyst, or blue, lavender and aquamarine, Lauren creates a stimulating and appealing palette cast in fabrics which include fine lamb suede, linen sand-washed silk, cotton cashmere and silk jersey. The country clothing line combines sleek modern elements with ethnic American designs. These country clothes are sexy, light and easy to dress up, or down. Long circle skirts of pieced cotton appear bright against black and are at their best when teamed with a black, v-neck T-shirt. Black cotton pants, with wide and cropped legs, can be dressed up with a black T-shirt and white bolero jacket with a single, silver concho button and vibrant serape waist wrap. And so to the weekends and the sporting arena. Lauren creates two moods with Active Trainer and the Great Outdoors lines. For the gym - or a cappuccino on the way home - the Active Trainer collection includes tonal mixes of stone, cream, oatmeal and heather grey in cotton cashmere mix. Active clothing for the great outdoors mixes stretch fabrics in bright colours. Weathered canvas chino dresses clothe women for hiking or cycling. Bold graphics and sleek, modern shapes show off great style and healthy, fit bodies. For cool mornings on the mountain, a short, red zip-front hooded jacket is worn over a blue and white striped sweatshirt with an orange hood, red leggings and khaki chino hiking shorts.