NEW YORK, United States — For the fashion followers that decided to stick it out in New York to take in the triumphant homecoming of Marc Jacobs who — starting with this autumn/winter 2014 collection — would now be focusing all of his creative energies on his signature brand, the wait ended in a rather unexpected way. Instead of giving his fans a bold sartorial declaration of independence, Jacobs offered up a palate cleanser of a collection.
Under a ceiling of white cushion cumulus clouds the audience sat on individual cylindrical foam seats, like so many oversized marshmallows. It was a sweet set up that continued into the collection with models wearing pastel candy coloured shoulder length wigs and luminous makeup. And the clothing too was also gently charming in its own way.
To the dissonant soundtrack of Jessica Lange reciting the words to the song “Happy Days Are Here Again,” the models came out in clothing that clearly referenced the futuristic styles of the 1960s personified in the work of André Courrèges and Pierre Cardin. But as is the case with Jacobs, he took that grain of an idea and made it into something uniquely his own.
And more than that this collection, with its long sleeve shift dresses and matching bell bottom pants, tunic tops and loungewear cashmere knit ensembles, was filled with wearable pieces. When Jacobs moved away from his vision of these space age uniforms — including some killer oversized shearling embellished bomber jackets — he took to the skies.
Shimmering sequins ensembles in swirling patterns looked as if they had sprung from the Milky Way. Shift dresses with undulating line patterns could have been referencing sound waves. And the final few simple slip on dresses were given a cloud like movement via languid tiers of light as air chiffon.
If this collection didn’t roar Jacobs' returned focus on his roots, it did whisper his intentions to reach a broader audience with his clothing. Which, when you are trying to set up a successful IPO, is the smartest business move a designer can make.
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