Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Marc Jacobs: What is it I'm not getting?

When it comes to Marc Jacobs I feel depressingly out of step. Am I just stubborn and blind? Am I willfully sticking to a gun filled with blanks? Maybe like Anna Wintour says in The September Issue, I'm just part of that pack that denigrates fashion and its Stars because I'm not a member of the club, putting down those ones who are. Maybe so, maybe not. I've never been good at club membership and tend to shy away from them. I step to the side .

Watching this whole week of shows and the members take their places and strike their poses is a reminder that I'm still off to the side. It's where I'm most comfortable. To pretend otherwise would be a lie and I'm too old and seen too much towaste time fooling myself or anyone else.

Marc Jacobs collection for Spring strikes me very much like so many of his collections in the past.There are a barrage of ideas, references and such a profusion of styling that it's hard to grab a hold of what I'm seeing to make sense of it. There are several elements to this complex symphony that are tantalizing, even hypnotic. Beautifully cut coats and artfully draped dresses awash with detail. Ruffles that are so amusing, fashion that made me smile and laugh in a raucous, joyful way. Even simple confections that were like mere tinklings from a child's toy piano were magical. The sophistication and audaciously unapologetic presentation set it apart from everything I've seen. So why does it still escape me? I guess as much as I'd like to be, I'm just not that cool.

Seen separately there are many ideas that are creative and modern. Though steeped in the past with many reminders of the masters of only 20 years ago, Marc's vision feels jumbled and chaotic. There are certainly a plethora of ideas to fill the racks of so many hungry, desperate stores. I fear the customer will be left to her own devices. Perhaps it is a collection that is perfect for these times. You can buy one of these or one of those and not feel you have to have it all. Only the show was designed and built for us to take in the complete performance from its overture, through each movement and the final crescendo. It was all so much, so many instruments crowding the stage and so loud that I had trouble focusing. The pictures I've chosen are the looks I liked best. Jacobs has an amazing team he conducts and the collection is crammed with ideas. I just don't quite see the brilliance in it. If you send out everything you can think of and style it so nothing is left out something is sure to stick.

I will say this, he has a huge arsenal of ideas and fortunately a very powerful machine to fuel them. Perhaps that's good enough. It doesn't get much better than that for a designer, I would just like to come away from his show blown away instead of blown to bits.


Christa Weil said...

largely with you, especially regarding recent seasons, but in these images are some truly covetable clothes. That transparent organza (?) piped with black is amazing, like an undersea creature.

And in motion, all those ruffles . . .

reading avidly, C

Unknown said...

I enjoy being on the outside looking in - it keeps me focused on what are my priorities when it comes to fashion and what I buy and wear. As you have noted March Jacob's vision is broad and he has the money to fuel it's production. He is offering up a buffet of options because he a buffet you may not miss what is there is it wasn't offered but because it is you may end up with a little on your plate..

Divalocity said...

Congrats to you on your new venture. Just saw the info on the Essence web site.I knew there was a career for you doing what you love and this is also your passion.
Now back to Marc, he does better looks for LV than he does for his own label.

Sandra @ said...

It's not just you. I'm not quite getting it as a whole. However, there are a ton of great details. Like Christa, I love the organza!

Pony said...

I completely agree. I too have a hard time understanding the fawning that constantly goes on over Marc Jacobs. Part of it is because his clothes are not made for my body type: curvy and athletic. Or for women like me who like to look put together, tailored, feminine and yet playful. They are for nymphs. Not a bad thing but not highly appealing to me. I do think he is a great designer but I never feel like if I won a million dollars his would be one of the stores i which I would immediately start spending it. But maybe I just don't get it either.