Marc Jacobs will be remembered for being a definitive designer for many generations to come, certainly of our time. Whether he’s being loud and grunge or subtle and cool, in a time where fashion can often feel forced and same-y, he throws a spanner in the works and delivers the unexpected.
As a designer, he marches to the beat of his own drum almost, always all the time; when everyone is going right he veers to the left, far out to the left into no man’s country and for the SS13 of both the mainline Marc Jacobs and diffusion Marc by Marc, he brought us something from far out there, a look so unexpected yet powerful. That is his thing. This wasn’t about the show, it lasted all of five minutes, but it forced a thought about fashion and history. And for a time after the show we were left feeling confounded and hungry for more. Like huh? He was not about to make everything all pretty and dainty…no, he took us away from all that into the brash territory. It was just plain crass and stark, downright dirty and very revolutionary. The 60s in the thick of the Mod Squad movement; factory girl Edie Sedgwick, London and the women with newly acquired liberation, were obvious muses for Mr Jacobs, all on the cusp of a sexual revolution with their low hanging skirt suits, big collars and cavalier attitude. Even if you weren’t born in the 60s this show touched on the style radicalisation of the era, it made one curious. A radical impropriety, lashing out against the prepsters and debutantes, forcing them to the margins. This was very much a rebellious collection, so many stripes I went cross eyed, tailored skirt suits, maxi dresses again with stripes, micro mini skirts, tee-shirts sans bottoms, ruffly collars, mid-rifs baring, zig-zagging sequins, dirty blondes, thick mascara, coarse, so coarse and yet so cool.
Marc by Marc was the complete opposite to the severity of the main line, still rebellious in tone, but it wasn’t as tense; layering and scarfing, a play with accessories. It felt familiar, like these clothes already lived in your wardrobe. What always intrigues is the styling of the Marc by Marc line that makes it so markedly different from the mainline by maintaining its youthful flair without being childish. The reference points felt very 80’s this time, Kids of America in the Cruel Summer…both songs big heats in the US in the early 80’s. Patterns on patterns, baggy on baggy, head ties and bags, it wasn’t sweet, it was a collection peppered with just enough gumption in style attitude, yet it was fun. It was almost like a return from a Gap Year abroad and the impact of that on your whole outlook on life; style, fashion and everything else. I liked it. I liked it a lot.