February 14, 2011 § Leave a comment
Happy Valentine’s Day, everybody! Sure, the fact that you’re reading this, assuming you are on the day of, might indicate your romantic status, but fear not. Fashion is like a communal significant other for its small but ardent group of followers. Fashion is the love of my life, I’ll readily admit, and a fresh set of shows is better than any hackneyed red roses or boxes of chocolate. So on to those, then.
Show attendees entered Marc Jacobs to find a dimly lit room playing smooth jazz and quilted patent leather columns displayed on stage. Perhaps Marc’s V-day slot got him thinking. As everyone got in their seats, however, and the lights went up, we were in for a surprise. Set to Marilyn Manson’s “The Beautiful People,” which seems to find anger in beauty, the show was something of a paradox. Yes, it had all the hallmarks (not the greeting card company) of a romantic show, but something was amiss. Marc has never been one to cater to the traditional buxom beauties, and he wasn’t about to start now. On the one hand, there were 40’s silhouettes, sequins, polka dots galore, lace, and jaunty little hats combining pretty much all of the above. Despite all that, however, he found little ways to pervert all of them. The 40’s shapes were shown in drab colors and awkward lengths. Combined with clunky ankle boots, they showed only a few inches of polka-dot-tight-covered legs, which made for more of a lanky silhouette than a salacious one. Perhaps this was not Marc’s most history-making or memorable show, but they were plenty of looks that suggested they were in for a quick ascent to magazine covers and pages. This was Marc in his witty, irreverent fighting form. In any event, it seems we’re in for a little romance this season, with lace becoming a top trend all around. « Read the rest of this entry »
September 13, 2010 § Leave a comment
Hey folks! We’ve got a short but sweet day today. Fashion Week is winding down, meaning that biggest of the shows are starting to come! Shall we?
The round amphitheater-esque seating at Marc Jacobs was no coincidence. Marc was feeling dramatic. As the models circled around the massive structure in the middle of the runway set to an almost violently tense classical soundtrack (“Summer” by Vivaldi), you almost expected someone’s evil twin to show up. And if you saw the same look twice, given the arrangement, you might have thought it actually happened.
Though he had a large role in popularizing that quiet, restrained feeling we’re still seeing now, there was no questioning the drama in the striking silhouettes, three-dimensional embroideries and accessories, and unrestrained glamour. The 70’s were clearly a big inspiration; these . The look was decidedly sexy, and very womanly, but it wasn’t the type of “sexy” we’ve become used to. If this girl was a hooker, she sure as hell didn’t come cheap. Every bit was put together; no silk scarf or giant sun hat was spared. Though it seemed to be the antithesis of everything we’ve seen thus far this season, we saw the same fluid and forgiving fits, but they demanded far more attention than the wallflower-like variations that have been shown around.
So was it good? Well, that’s tricky. It was certainly unexpected, though that’s hardly unexpected itself coming from Marc. Moreover, it was stimulating. It made you think, and it confronted you with things that you had never necessarily given a second look to before. That’s what the best of innovators do, and it bodes well for how we’ll look back on this collection in the future. For now, the printed pieces from the beginning and off-the-shoulder dresses from the middle are particularly memorable. The rest will need to be digested, but something tells me this is one for the books. « Read the rest of this entry »
February 16, 2010 § Leave a comment
There’s something about Fashion Week and my internet connection that just don’t agree. I spent the weekend in a semi-depression over my disconnection from the world. Anyway, my internet’s back, but I fear I can’t possibly make up what I’ve missed. I did, however, look over the shows from Saturday and Sunday, and here’s what I thought, in a nutshell. Ohne Titel was great, and I loved the mesh pieces. Prabal Gurung and Altuzarra both turned out amazing collections, but I preferred Gurung’s for it’s practicality and envisioned a future for him as the Marc Jacobs of the next generation. Alexander Wang stepped up his game and experimented with suiting in a way that I felt was evocative of Miuccia Prada’s approach to design. He had some iffy moments, but I thought it was a job well done. Irina Shabayeva deserves a mention; she’s one of the most talented Project Runway winners, I think, and her collection was very luxe for a debut. I loved DKNY, as I always do, but I thought it was an especially good season. Herve Leger was surprisingly inventive, for a brand not really known for that. Y-3 was great, and it revived some of the grunge aspects that were peeking through at the beginning of the week. But I think by far my favorite collection over the weekend was Thakoon. I especially liked the prints and the fur hoods. The look was very strong, and the collection was an amazing achievement from him. So that’s it, as far as quick reactions. I’m incredibly remorseful that I can’t give all of those designers proper write-ups, but I really was impressed with all of the collections I saw. It’s going to be a good season, I think. It’s not over yet, so let’s get to today’s shows.
Pinch me. Marc Jacobs’ latest collection plays out like a dream sequence. Jacobs’ approach is often to take the ordinary and paint it in a new light. That was very much the case with this collection, given the neutral pallet and the billowy cuts. But there was some element that seemed larger than life. The look didn’t feel like it belonged to the past or the present. It was at once romantic and pragmatic. There was something extraordinary about how ordinary it came across. There was a practical streak, I think, in how everything was lined in thick fabrics and especially roomy. Comfort was definitely a statement he was trying to convey, right down to the noticeably flat shoes. He has a habit of exploring the frumpy and making it charming. I think that was the point, but it was at times hard to tell. He designed more with his heart than his head. It’s a pleasant collection, but it’s nothing too groundbreaking. Once the pieces are dissected and reinvented come Fall, they’ll be welcome dosages of homey charm. For now, however, they’re nice. But how far can nice take you? « Read the rest of this entry »
September 15, 2009 § Leave a comment
Alright kids. We’ve got no time to waste so let’s get to it.
The secret behind the genius of innovative fashion forces like Marc Jacobs is being ahead of the curve. As other designers try to relive the magic Jacobs created last season with his madcap downtown 80’s vibe, he himself has decided to do the polar opposite. The word sure to be on industry heavyweights’ lips come tomorrow morning is ruffles. Just as soon as we tired of the last procession, Jacobs brought them back in full force. All around, the effect was certainly doll-like, and Marc approached his concept with characteristic alacrity. Despite the intricate construction of these new, ruffles 2.0, the look felt flat and stuffy at times. Never one to completely strike out, however, Jacobs managed to get enough quality looks with a total newness to them that we can be sure the collection will entirely pervade the Spring fashion issues next year. And I wouldn’t have it any other way. Full Show Here.
September 14, 2009 § Leave a comment
Uy! Can you believe we’re already halfway done with New York Fashion Week? Of course, then we have London, Milan, and Paris…but we’re taking it one week at a time right now. Start your recovery with today’s shows:
Derek Lam, usually a master of restraint, went a little bit crazy this season. That’s not to say that his collection of vivid colors and punchy prints isn’t fun and alluring. But for someone whose founded his business on unfussy clothing easily adaptable into the “real” woman’s wardrobe, the thigh-grazing hemlines and flippant shapes are a little bold, to say the least. That’s fine, of course; there’s no problem in seeking a younger and more carefree clientele. But to risk alienating your core customer at a time like this? Full Show Here. « Read the rest of this entry »
May 4, 2009 § Leave a comment
Donna Karan knows a thing or two about timeless quality. Her line is constantly chosen by women who want the best. This season, a return to quality was especially significant and prevalent, making it the perfect opportunity for Ms. Karan to dazzle us with her years’ worth of skills. This attention to craftsmanship is most evident in her fantastic array of accessories. From luxurious ankle boots in the most savory of crocodile to motorcycle totes incorporating colorful python, it’s hard to avoid the “s” word (staple…in this case) but there’s plenty of creativity to make that concept exciting again.
February 17, 2009 § Leave a comment
Hey again! For your information, I am now thoroughly caffeinated, so let’s see some FASHION!!!!!!!!!!
(click on an image to make it bigger–sorry, but there were too many to resize them manually)
As if the 80’s weren’t back enough, Marc Jacobs spread the love a little a lot more. With 6o+ individual models all with unique hairstyles, Jacobs was hardly intent on writing the season off, as all the press about his budget cuts has suggested. Instead, he presented the perfect antidote to the troubling times. He recalled the extravagance and opulence of the 80’s, a very different brand from what we’ve come to know recently. In the 80’s, people went the extra mile with their individualism, expressing themselves through big hair-dos, bright colors, and extreme silhouettes, instead of “bling bling” as far as the eye can see. Jacobs playfully brought back this attitude with neon pieces and extreme glamour a-plenty. The thing about fashion recently is that it’s been dark, grim. But just when you think everybody’s doing it, you can always count on Marc Jacobs to level the playing field. Maybe his optimism will signal an actual retooling of the industry. Because a can of hairspray is a heck of a lot cheaper than a diamond necklace.
There’s more, more, more if you click, click, click « Read the rest of this entry »