Monday, September 19, 2011

Dancehall Sweethearts

Just when the whole fashion pack was beginning to expire from the dearth of any new mega trend in the New York season into which it could dig it's editorial and retailing teeth, along came Marc Jacobs and wowed us with a plasticized dancehall sweethearts show that will ignite a half a dozen new movements in the world of clothing and style.

His Wild West naughty gals meets Chicago nightclub flappers spring 2012 collection, staged Thursday, Sept. 15, in New York, will be the most influential show this season. Among its major trends will be plastic-coated ginghams, layered faux glass skirts, prim bobby socks, cloche headbands and a soft louche attitude.

The show also got everyone's vote for the best presentation in New York in many seasons, a dramatic barn dance setting with fairy lights, patched-up pine dance floor and gigantic, cheap gold curtains. Pulled away, the stage revealed models perched provocatively on wooden saloon chairs. Jacobs last collection for Louis Vuitton in Paris in March referenced boudoir chic and prostitute?s glamour, and while this show had an easy virtue air, there was something purer and more innocent about the whole mood.

The majority of models wore either cowboy boots - and the see-through plastic versions will be another big trend - or courtly high-heels paired with ankle socks.

But if the collection referenced any era it was the Twenties with flapper dresses - albeit in green and white plasticized gingham. Throughout, the designer used technical fabrics to re-invent customary codes - most brilliantly with nylon gabardine sweatshirts, another look that will be influential.

"It?s about women being tough and hardy even. But somehow being American and fresh, if you know what I mean," Jacobs commented backstage.

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