Should one always read the signs—or what one imagines are the signs—at a Marc Jacobs show? A dreamlike suspension of white clouds scudding high above the audience’s heads, drawing the eye up, a depiction of skyward freedom? The sound track that consisted of a lush yet melancholic orchestral passage playing as Jessica Lange intoned the words to “Happy Days Are Here Again.” (If you’re only familiar with the likes of the Judy and Barbara version, then you’ll want to get a load of this one.) A color palette of bone and ivory and beige and nude, a scheme of whispering neutrals that indicated a cleansing-like reset on everything? Was all this an indication of where Marc Jacobs’s head is at post–Louis Vuitton? Honestly, really, who cares? The wonderful thing about Marc Jacobs is that he is capable of conjuring up a million different moods, alighting on something, only to turn 180 degrees the very next season.
For fall, those pale, paler, palest colors were used for a collection that started out with a reductive hand, stripping everything back to spare, athletic cashmere dresses, finishing low on the leg, and slit to reveal matching paneled and zippered leggings and quilted leather or ostrich flat ankle boots. The Courrèges-ish vibe that look gave off gradually got stronger as the show progressed, to scoop-necked tunics atop banded flared pants, before plunging full on into the season’s growing preoccupation with cozy sweater dressing; from Marc, that meant the likes of oatmeal ribbed tanks worn with leggings that puddled over sneakers, and very Sonia-Rykiel-in-the-seventies long-line sweaters with matching skinny scarves and slim skirts. Gradually, washes of stronger hues, like lilac, apricot, and aquamarine started to seep through, appearing on voluminous cropped bomber jackets, before sparkling as lean metallic dresses, or as an ombré on a series of heavenly tiered dresses. The overall effect was similar in mood, if not look, to the costumes in Spike Jonze’s brilliant Her; a sense of the past and the familiar unsettlingly recalibrated for the future. But that’s only my impression. As with all that Marc does, just stay in the moment and enjoy where his journey takes you right this second