Marc by Marc Jacobs Spring/Summer 2012
FEW things are unmovable in the ephemeral world of fashion, and one of the last standing bastions was finally broken when Marc Jacobs announced he would be pushing the date of his mainline collection to Thursday from Monday. For as long as anyone can remember, Jacobs showed on Monday evening. Period. Add to that some other heated rumors flying around, and one would be right in thinking that tensions were high for tonight’s showing of his ancillary line, Marc by Marc Jacobs. As an added trick, Jacobs started the show a minute or so early, barring many major editors who were coming from uptown’s Perry Ellis show.
Though the two usually don’t share a correlating theme, Marc by Marc is pointedly a bit broader and appeals to a wider audience than the original Marc Jacobs line – that’s its purpose. The past few seasons have relied heavily on broad allusions to bygone eras to varying levels of success.
If Marc is anything, he’s a rebel. When the world says go right, you can bet he’ll go left. The perfect example would be tonight’s collection, an amuse-bouche that rejected the histrionics being shown on catwalks all over town. Instead, Jacobs and his team decided to pare things way, way down – this was subtlety, but done on Marc’s terms. What this meant was a simplicity in shape – easily digestible forms that enhanced the body without being overly trendy or intellectual. They just worked. While there was bold use of colour – most notably traffic cone orange and kelly green to liven the navys and blacks – but they were geometric and graphic, and avoided the trap of looking dated, even if there was a hint of New Wave to them. Take his opening two looks, one for women and one for men: The ladies’ look was a sleeveless sack dress in amped-up orange. The men’s was a nicely tailored suit (not too sharp, not too baggy), in the same orange, with a white shirt. That’s it. No styling tricks or affected eccentricities were employed. Most pieces were shown in one shade until the final third of the show when stripes, exaggerated plaids and cutesy flowers were introduced, but it never felt forced or derivative. There was a Céline-like cleanliness and a more sophisticated vibe. The swimsuits, one gaily striped and one with precious peplums, and striped totes are sure to be hard to keep on shelves.
Overall this season Jacobs breathed new life into his decade-old secondary line, which had seemed neglected and dwarfed in his eponymous label’s shadow. With the scheduling creating a unique about-face with Marc’s own time-honored schedule (mainline on Monday nights, Marc by Marc on Tuesday), it leaves everyone to begin the countdown to Thursday night.