Marc Jacobs is no wallflower – the designer has never been afraid of risks but his latest collection’s mix of themes, patterns and genres was a perilous gamble. Luckily for Jacobs, and for us the gamble pays off. The complex and often wild creations Jacobs showed for Spring are at times overwhelming. There are feasts for the eyes and then there are massive visual binges – plaid, sequins, stripes, lame, glitter, florals and all in one ensemble. Somehow the thrown together pastiche works beautifully, the styling is elegantly disheveled and completely modern.
The opening segment began with a veritable Easter Parade of models sent straight from the milliner. With their waists cinched with wide banded belts and the most perilous of shoes on their feet they resembled the gilded grand dames of yesteryear taken up a notch – think Doris Duke on acid. Everything about these clothes makes a larger than life statement – it is as though Jacob’s own recent explorations in the joys of brazen behavior have enlivened his sensibilities as a designer. There is something delightfully in your face about the entire collection – particularly the juxtapositions Whether its layered sheer meets PVC black or a mix of clashing prints.
Naturally things mellow out towards the end. Those looking for a muted alternative to such loudness will find it in the final few dresses. The soft pastels with their unadorned look add a calm finish to the wild ride. It’s interesting to see how as the show progressed the look became less and less ornate. It was as though Jacobs slowly filtered the color out of his palette with each piece – he began with a bang and ended with a whisper. The final grey dress stands out not just for it’s beautiful draping but also for it’s calm simplicity, it serves as a respite from the sensory overload of the entire show.
All in all there was a mastery to this collection – it will not be something everyone embraces immediately but it is sure to be influential. Special attention must be paid of course the the impeccable casting. Old favorite girls like Jamie Bochert and Christina Kruse looked just as fresh up against the latest faces – their presence was the icing on already decadent cake.