Last season’s runway show for Marc Jacobs wasn’t a glowing success. Pastel dreadlocks on mostly white girls was slammed on social media as culture appropriation. So the designer’s decision to approach that audience head on for his Fall17 collection was, if nothing else, a bit brave. The show was titled Respect, and unlike previous runway shows, Jacobs provided show notes to explain his train of thought, didn’t do interviews, allowed no camera phones, and pared the show aspect way back. There was no music, no set, no theatrics. Just girls wearing street style inspired clothes in homage to the hip-hop culture of Jacobs‘ youth, as he described “a generation that will forever be the foundation of youth-culture street style.” And this time, there was much more diversity represented in the line up.
And the clothes? Oh. yes. the. clothes. If you’re going to reference hip hop in the 80’s and 90’s, you have to remember that color palette. The neutrals mixed with orange and brown tones. Jacobs took this palette, muted it down, and refined it. And something the nostalgic in me loved to see was all the hats. The cloche hat has made a comeback as well as exaggerated heavy rolled knit caps and backwards ballcaps, and they made me smile.
Skater dresses were paired with heavy fur-collared jackets over sheer stockings and knee boots or platform shoes. Track pants and wide-leg corduroy trousers were paired with just slightly oversized sweaters or jackets. Accessories were large and loud – gold chains with massive pendants as well as earrings that make a statement from a mile away were shining on the models.
The looks definitely read yesteryear hip hop, but there were also a few that had just a grunge feel to them as well – a subculture that was also prevalent in the 90’s. The plaid, the oversize knit sweaters…It’s interesting to see someone’s reflection on that era, and how styles of subcultures influenced each other. All I know is if I dressed how Marc Jacobs wanted me to dress during that time, I would have been killing it in the fashion department.