After all the leather, fur, minimalism and Mad Men dreariness of winter, people have forgotten about the shades of summer sunshine. So what designer makes a signature 180degree turn from the neutrals of his Fall lineup? Marc Jacobs of course, he never does it in a subtle and gradual manner. This time it was an eruption of colour whose ash cloud will remain for the months ahead.
Paint almost dripped off the round défilé in the famous New York Lexington Armory last September, where models emerged in synchrony from different sides of the colossal polished gold cylinder installed in the middle of the exclusive venue. This season the models escape from the fifties and find refuge in the enlightened seventies. All while brandishing lace, flowers and glitter in the faces of the front row composed of Alexa Chung, Grace Coddington, Oliver Zahm, Diane von Furstenberg and many more.
Most designers are afraid of too much colour, and this collection proves that Marc Jacobs is not a coward. Coral, ochre, prune, coral pink, mustard, electric violet, bodeaux, gold, mauve and sand are all shades which assault the archetypal chicness of monochrome collections.
The seventies also came back in slim jacquard sweaters or in shorts and vests. Marc Jacobs brewed a potion of playful sensuality. The designer opened with newcomer Louisa Bianchin in an electric orange coat, with a camouflaged obi-like belt and subtle Eastern kimono sleeves. The consistent micro-design prints recall memories of couch tapestries in posh American apartments forty years ago.
Silk, strapless jumpsuits, gold lamé hot pants and soft peasant blouses fused with long skirts and thick leather belts made it seem like the models just came from the beach in St Tropez where they were soaking the sun with Bianca Jagger and Jerry Hall. The overall silk chic of flowing silhouettes hosted halter dresses with asymmetrical necklines, cocktail dresses with full skirts, and flared weaves to fuel the illusion of volume and lightness. Apart from silk, satin backed up the fabric feel, as well as leather, chiffon, linen, taffeta, net and lace.
But despite the disco craze of the collection, Marc Jacobs was in full control of the numerous strings of inspiration that filled his runway. “I was at Naomi Campbell’s birthday party in Cannes this summer, and we stayed dancing till 5 in the morning! All the girls were wearing long dresses, but by the end of the night they were hot, they had flowers in their hair, and they hitched their dresses up to the waist”. He does not explain his latest design outburst through deep contemplation of artistic research, but rather one very self-indulgent night in the summer of 2010. “The girls there were really chic, decadent, glamorous, but still so sophisticated, so beautiful. And I love to see women like that.”
Well, House of Maffia loves Marc Jacobs, and can’t wait for the summer, when we can be colour divas!