The last slot on the New York fashion week schedule belongs to Marc Jacobs, which means two things. One, there will always be a race to be first out the door at the end, as international editors race to make the last flight of the evening, and two, things are about to get interesting.
Jacobs is something of a disrupter in the fashion world, and his collections are a highlight on the schedule not just for the clothes, but for the often unusual spectacle of the shows themselves.
For SS18, said spectacle took over the Park Avenue Armoury, a space usually filled with elaborate sets- just a few days ago, Rihanna’s Fenty x Puma show saw the building overtaken with mountains of pink sand and black motocross ramps - riders opened the show with flips and jumps. Today, though, the Armoury is completely empty, bar for a single lines of fold out metal chairs - last season, they stretched right across the middle, from front door to back. This season, they trace the edge of the room, leaving an expanse of bare floorboards in between.
The models don't walk across the centre, but follow the line of chairs. They are within touching distance, every sequin visible. And there are a lot of sequins. Kaia Gerber wears a full length sequin dress in canary yellow, an oversized corsage on her shoulder. Black satin gloves stretch to above the elbow, with her hair tucked under a black satin turban, black kohl lining her eyes. Beaded vests in ice cream colours are paired with wide leg satin trousers, striped down the side. Shoes stream tinsel; satin bumbags cinch waists.
Jacobs skips from one era to another: 60s psychedelic prints here, there an 80s shell suit. Vivid colour is set against sombre brown pinstripes. “During the last few months while friends vacationed, we took a holiday in our heads and went somewhere”, read the show notes left in manilla folders on our seats. It's a Grey Gardens sort of somewhere, that clash of decadence against reality.
The last model’s footsteps ring out against the wood: the show has been held in complete silence. Suddenly, the reason for the chair reshuffle becomes clear, as the models reemerge to cross the room as a pack, six or seven abreast, as opera blares out of speakers. Jacobs emerges from the wings as the diva reaches her crescendo: for this New York season, the fat lady is singing.
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