In what is what is likely a first in the fashion industry when it comes to the blogosphere, Marc Jacobs has joined the ongoing online debate raging about his supposed row with Suzy Menkes, the highly regarded fashion editor of the International Herald Tribune.
In his comment on Cathy Horyn’s On the Runway blog, Jacobs says:
I did NOT stick my tongue out at Suzy Menkes……I pulled a stupid face with my tongue out in happiness for being done with what has been a great but most stressful season for me. I am not stupid, childish or a vindictive person….I had prior to the show left a silly t-shirt and a nice note for Suzy on her seat. Why would I do anything to further upset her? Right after a show!!?? Cathy and all else reading this, I am surprised that anyone who knows me at all think that I am that petty or stupid! Anyone who has ever been on a stage would know you can’t actually see the audience. I made a face at no one in particular….I didn’t have a clue as to who was sitting there. Come on guys, give me a break!!!!!
Jacobs’ decision to respond to the backlash in a public forum, as opposed to using the normal channels of publicists and press releases, was a smart one. You can only respond to the blogosphere by going straight to the heart of the storm and engaging the community. Marc Jacobs’ choice to do this on Horyn’s blog also shows how On the Runway has become a formidable community with its own voice in the industry. And the response from the community has generally been very positive.
Said one commenter of Mr. Jacobs response:
For some reason I completely missed Marc Jacobs post. I don’t mean to bring his documentary up again (And if your reading this Marc I apologize in advance as it’s all I have to go by) but one thing you gather very quickly is how stressful his job is (It reminded me of architecture school and I can’t imagine pulling off all-nighters again for the rest of my life), it’s not only about the design anymore but maintaining a public image as well.
Horyn added her two cents in, possibly to calm the storm:
Some of you probably noticed that Marc Jacobs posted, explaining his side of what happened at the end of the Vuitton show, and I also contacted him by phone. I’m convinced after talking to him that the tongue-wagging, face-pulling on the runway was misunderstood and not directed at Suzy Menkes, though it upset her, and I offered him my apologies for the fuss. After the dust-up in New York, Jacobs said he had put a T-shirt on her seat at the LV show as an olive branch. It showed a cartoon of the fashion critic wringing the designer’s neck and it was embroidered by Lesage. He thought it was a sweet way of making up.
Menkes herself hasn’t commented on the issue since she said she wanted to wring the designer’s neck after his New York show ran 2 hours late. Her recent review of the Louis Vuitton show, also designed by Jacobs, was cautiously complimentary.