Marc Jacobs is a designer with the power to change things. To qualify: in a season that already looks like it will feature a lot of nice product on the catwalk rather than actual ideas, he is a designer who can push something different – and still make it look desirable. So it was with his collection for AW11.
To a pounding soundtrack of Marilyn Manson’s ‘Beautiful People’, on a mirrored catwalk lined with quilted vinyl pillars, this was a surprising and sexy show, fast-paced and fabulous. Polka dots were the story: from spray-on latex pencil skirts to strictly structured jackets, everything was spotty and dotty, yet somehow also severe and disciplined. Pillbox hats and patent wedge boots accompanied each look. Lame and lace, midis and maxis, collars, ruffs and peplums galore: the ideas never stopped.
The shapes suggested couture while the energy implied something much less restrained. Silvery rubber trousers opened the show while an ankle-skimming skirt closed it. It was a crazily unrestrained romp that succeeded in also looking clever and coherent. It might not make a whole lot of sense yet, but it’s set a standard for the rest of this season.