Marc Jacobs reinvents the 1960s

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Marc Jacobs reinvents the 1960s

Every fashionista in the world loves to follow trends, especially the ones started by Marc Jacobs.
Toward the mid-’90s, when the fashion industry was getting tired of minimalism and bohemian chic, the designer brought classic American style back to the runway. That visionary move helped him become the creative director at Louis Vuitton in 1997, one of the most-talked-about promotions in the industry. His major accomplishment since joining the French company was reinterpreting luxury in today’s fast-changing fashion world.
The designer’s own label, Marc Jacobs, proved in its 2003 fall and winter collection to be another trendsetter in fashion. This year, Jacobs chose the 1960s mode as his primary inspiration: Paco Rabanne’s metallic embellishments, Yves Saint Laurent’s color block theme inspired by Mondrian paintings and Courrege’s candy-colored graphic proportions. In other words, an era of fashion revolution was reinvented.
A trunk show organized by Marc Jacobs Korea in a Cheongdam-dong cafe earlier this month created something of a stir, eliciting “oohs” and “aahs” from Korean industry professionals. Local models wearing blunt-cut wigs paraded in A-line minidresses and skirts, typical of the Twiggy look popular in the ’60s.
Jumpers, dresses and boxy jackets were simple and lean. Vibrant colors ― orange, blue, pink, red and violet ― were geometrically cut in circles and squares to display color blocks. When matched with solid white or cream, the candy-colored blocks created strong graphic art.
The contrast was not limited to colors; it also included materials. If the ’60s were all about experimenting with new fabrics, such as nylon, polyester and vinyl, the Marc Jacobs collection took the clash of materials to another level: matte versus gloss, incorporating both traditional and modern fabrics. The wholesome coordination of cashmere knit and wool against patent leather and sequins was fun and exciting, but more important, it was elegant and luxurious. The hidden message here: If the 100-percent polyester mod dresses of the ’60s were made for every woman, Marc Jacobs’s new mod edition is made for the fashionable and exclusive few who can afford the steep price tag.
The audience instantly noticed the shoes at the show. They were retro-chic, but not necessarily evocative of ’60s go-go. They suggested more of an ’80s look. Pumps were fashioned with short and rounded toes, dainty, low heels and cute decorative elements, such as bows and buttons. Cream-colored boots, cut wide in the leg, were calf-high. Both pumps and boots were worn with opaque tights in primary colors, which were considered high fashion 15 years ago.
Fashion-conscious viewers left the fashion show thoroughly impressed. When Jacobs does it, even yesterday’s tackiest things become the most coveted chic today.


by Ines Cho
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