Marc Jacobs always goes for drama at his Park Avenue Armory runway shows, and his spring ’20 show was no different. But it was less serious this time.
Showing on the 18th anniversary of 9/11, Jacobs included in his show notes a memory of his show that year, on September 10, 2001. At Pier 54 that night, with the Twin Towers a few hundred yards away, the designer showed a happy collection inspired by ’70s flower children — a stark contrast to the dark events that would happen just hours later.
Jacobs went back to that contrast for spring ’20 with a collection filled with whimsy and joy, pointing to “life, joy, equality, individualism, optimism, happiness indulgence, dreams and a future unwritten” against what he called the “narrative of a dystopian society.” Mentioning the “transient archives of the internet,” and the “endless sea of digital influencers,” he pointed to specific people of the IRL past as his inspirations: Karl Lagerfeld, Doris Day, Lee Radziwill and Anita Pallenberg.
The result was another collection with his signature whimsy, and then some. There were flowing florals; breezy pantsuits in plaids, patterns and vibrant colors like sunshine yellow; metallic pants; puffs of tulle floral, vinyl and leather; Victoriana nightgown dresses; top hats; colorful knits, all on a diverse group of models (something Jacobs has long been doing). On foot, low suede mules, sneakers and clomping platforms made walking easy but also fun. Gigi Hadid walked out in a knit minidress wearing no shoes but walking on her tiptoes.
The designer also referenced HBO’s series “Euphoria” (with both joy and the aforementioned dystopia), and there were hints of the wardrobes of characters like Zendaya’s Rue and Hunter Schafer’s Jules: genderless metallic pants, masculine pantsuits like the one that Rue wears to the school dance, and yes, loads of creative eye makeup in a rainbow of glitters.
Jacobs had a skip in his step as he walked the finale, capping off a season that has put New York fashion definitively back on the map with thoughtful, inclusive messaging, and an all-American smile.
See more styles on the runway from the Marc Jacobs spring 2020 collection at NYFW.