Heads will Turn For Marc Jacobs

  1. From the Wall Street Journal ....

    Heads Will Turn For Marc Jacobs
    September 9, 2006; Page A2

    New York's fashion week kicks into high gear as a swarm of fashion editors, photographers and retail buyers go through a catwalk drill that will take in 191 different fashion shows by Friday. Hosts will include big names like Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren and Vera Wang.

    But the show to watch most closely happens Monday: the unveiling of designer Marc Jacobs's new wares.

    The New York designer, who also creates Louis Vuitton's women's ready-to-wear collection in Paris, has in recent seasons become the single most influential designer in the United States. What he sends down the runway will be adapted, referenced or just plain copied by everyone from fellow designers to department stores to chains like Ann Taylor and the Gap next spring.


    The Wall Street Journal's Ray A. Smith survey the scene at New York's fashion week, while Amy Chozick checks out the runways in Japan.
    In fall 2004, Mr. Jacobs launched a collection dubbed "librarian chic" with tweedy straight skirts and cardigans that ushered in a new wave of updated traditionalism. In 2003, he scored with his cartoon print Murakami handbag for Louis Vuitton and multi-pocketed handbags under his namesake label. Both looks ignited a flood of lookalikes over the past several years. In 2001, he breathed new life into the round toe ballerina flat, and his versions have been widely adopted by other shoemakers, making such flats the unofficial "walking shoes" for working women.

    While many consumers consider Mr. Jacobs the leader of America's newest design talents, the 43-year-old New Yorker has been running fashion houses for more than 20 years. Most of that time, he struggled to get his styles into stores, despite the fact that he was the darling of top fashion editors. His initial claim, the famous "grunge" collection created when he was head designer at Perry Ellis in 1992, was deemed so uncommercial that it promptly got him fired.

    After he was hired as creative director at Paris handbag giant Louis Vuitton in 1996, Mr. Jacobs began to breathe new life into the brand whose sales are close to $5 billion a year. Vuitton's parent, luxury goods giant LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, then took a controlling stake in Mr. Jacobs's namesake collection. It has since blossomed into a thriving business, as trendy young women scoop up the outfits that Mr. Jacobs markets under his Marc Jacobs and Marc by Marc casual collections.

    In fashion, what goes around always comes around. And that was the case with Mr. Jacobs's fall 2006 collection, now in stores, which is a modern redux of his layered grunge look from 1992. Instead of being derided this time, the look has been praised as influential in the start of this fall's new toned-down fashion cycle, including darker colors, leggings, layered dressing and platform shoes.

    Write to Teri Agins at teri.agins@wsj.com
  2. Wow, I can't wait to see pictures.
  3. Can't wait to see them.
    Thanks for sharing. =)
  4. Thanks for posting, I cannot wait! Marc Jacobs is a genuis!
  5. i love teri's articles.