New York Fashion Week doesn’t officially return until September, but Marc Jacobs is back on the runway after more than a year-long hiatus. The designer debuted his namesake label’s Fall 2021 collection with an intimate show (of only vaccinated guests) at the New York Public Library on Monday night.
Jacobs’s (very much welcomed) return was a major moment in the industry, as he opted out of the past virtual fashion weeks since February 2020. His most recent collection, Fall 2020, didn’t even go into production due to the global pandemic, and throughout the past year-and-a-half, Jacobs had no desire to act as if it’s business as usual.
“To be honest, I don’t know what we’ll be doing or when we’ll be starting,” he said in April 2020 during an interview with British Vogue’s Edward Enninful at the four-day virtual conference called Vogue Global Conversations. “To design a collection, I need my team. And my team needs to look at fabric, and those fabrics come from Italy. We travel. [There are] a lot of things that go on.”
Jacobs’s stance still remains more than one year later, reiterating these points in the show notes for his Fall 2021 collection:
“Creating a collection requires enormous effort over many months from our small group of extraordinarily talented and dedicated individuals. We find purpose in the work from and for periodic but powerful transcendent moments of joy. And while the world continues to change with unimaginable speed, my love for fashion, the desire to create and share collections through this delivery system — THE RUNWAY — endures.”
The creative process is sacred to Jacobs, something that could never be substituted with Zooms, shared Google Drives, Slack messages, or virtual shows. But he’s also been able to afford to wait it out. While some brands were pivoting to loungewear, home decor, and direct-to-consumer ranges, Jacobs launched Heaven, a ‘90s-inspired, Gen Z-adjacent fashion line that has already taken over TikTok and Young Hollywood since its debut in September 2020.
As for what Marc Jacobs’s fans will want to be wearing this fall, it’s a Space Age aesthetic for the city crowd. Mega-high platform shoes, sculptural oversized puffers, iridescent paillette dresses, goggle-like sunglasses, and shiny wide-leg trousers are paired with turtleneck knits, plisse pleats, baseball caps, and a new logo motif that repeats itself into its own all-over print. The runway show was mostly viewed (and captured) from the side — an anti-fit pic angle, something that Jacobs seems to be very familiar with while in quarantine — and every multi-layered look appeared to be its own sculptural work of art.
“Through the physicality of this shared experience, I hope to offer a moment of inspiration, curiosity, wonder, and possibility,” concluded the designer in his show notes. If anyone has found themselves in a wardrobe rut as the world continues to open up, leave it to Jacobs to spark some creativity and joy back into an everyday dressing routine.
Watch Marc Jacobs’ Fall 2021 runway show, below.