Fasten your seat belts; it’s going to be a feisty, madcap ride for spring. Indeed, the Marc by Marc Jacobs collection packed a zippy punch in a riotous mix of prints and patterns: leopard spots with Op Art, gingham with florals, pinstripes and tartans and so on. The Eighties-centric palette — saturated primaries and highlighter hues — only kicked things up a loud notch, and delightfully so. This time the label’s retro glance scored a thematic boost in Africana, seen through a funky Basquiat lens. Jacobs wittily pilfered from his own oeuvre as well, recasting some of those fall Marc Jacobs tops, with folded Forties-meets-Eighties shoulders, in casual sweatshirt fleece. And the famous Louis Vuitton bunny ears? They’re now head wraps, tied Lucille Ball-style. 


As for the men’s wear, this season the freshest patterns rejected the traditions of the Western ruling class, and there may be no more an appealing example than Jacobs’ candy-colored African prints — allusions, perhaps, to Bow Wow Wow’s tribal influences. Sweatshirts, some deconstructed and cropped, and even Bill Cosby sweaters, looked chic again. The Marc man’s untucked style evoked Basquiat’s nonchalant way around a blazer. Somehow Jacobs keeps overturning memories of the Eighties without resorting to clichés.

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