As an antidote to the lightning pace of the digital universe and the fashion world’s collective on-to-the-next attitude, Marc Jacobs envisioned his collection for Louis Vuitton as an excuse to pause and appreciate what a house like Vuitton is capable of creating. Beautiful bags, such as the fantastic redos of the Vuitton Speedy, were basically guaranteed.
So it was a captivating atmosphere. Shown under a greenhouselike tent surrounding an active fountain in the Cour Carrée du Louvre, and set to the music of “And God Created Woman,” the whole production had a grand retro cinematic air and clothes to match, which was a problem.
Fleshy swimsuit-edition girls, including Laetitia Casta, Elle Macpherson, Bar Refaeli and Adriana Lima, filled out hefty tweed suits, printed wool and chiffon dresses, all nipped at the waist, Fifties-style. “This is Vuitton,” Jacobs said at the mention of the street casting he held for his own show in New York. “Everything is bigger.”
He meant the full scale of things, but could just have easily been referring to the model’s assets, breasts spilling out from wool corsets and hips accentuated by full midlength skirts. But if the fit-and-flare silhouette celebrated womanly beauty, it also showed how dated and unrealistic the look is now. While it was all luxuriously crafted, the weighty fabrics, skirt lengths and volumes managed to turn the world’s biggest sexpots into dowdy matrons at times. Coats made better use of the sturdy construction, and stellar knits, such as a yellow sweater cabled out of sequins, delivered the collection’s few fresh, younger moments.
It was a rare misstep for Jacobs, but it goes to show that, in today’s accelerated world, there’s no time to rewind. But the handbags were worth slowing down for. Jacobs singled out Vuitton’s 80-year-old Speedy bag, originally known as the Express, as the focus of his high-quality chase, here, put to good use. He exercised the atelier’s talents by reimagining the bag in flocked and sequined monograms, cloque, lace and Damier checks re-created in fox fur and hand-painted croc — incredible treatments that flaunted the workmanship and made a new classic for every type of tony LV lady.