/ Kelly Sparks / 2 pm Fri, Sep 13 2013
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  • Marc Jacobs' Burning Man frat party beachwear Victoriana

    Marc Jacobs' Burning Man frat party beachwear Victoriana

    Fashion designer and stylist Kelly Sparks looks at Marc Jacobs' new line of gothic Gotham costumery straight from your grandma's attic.

    As a fashion designer and stylist, I look forward every year to watching the Marc Jacobs shows at New York Fashion Week. I also save my pretty pennies every season to purchase one of his outstanding pieces, whether it’s shoes, an accessory, or a coveted garment from his collection. For Spring/Summer 2013 I waited until a long leopard jersey number went down to 40% off so I could rationalize buying it. I told myself I'd wear it all the time. I did wear it. Once. But who's counting. I adore Marc Jacobs. I always have.

    So last night I was glued to my laptop anxiously awaiting his Spring 2014 Ready-to-Wear show to stream live. The Marc Jacobs line was the last collection to be revealed at NYFW and I was sure it would be my favorite. The depressing music started and I felt like I was instantly re-seated on the runway to the apocalypse. I wondered if the set -- exuding the feeling of a trashy, dark desolate alley in a crappy neighborhood -- would surprise us and transform into a scene of glamour and beauty. It didn't. And the clothes! The clothes looked like something you might get excited about if you found them in a box in the corner of your grandma’s attic. You would dust off one of the jackets and maybe wear it once, suffering through the mothball stink, and then just hang it up in your closet for posterity. Each look that came out was heavier and more cobwebby than the next.

    According to Vogue, Jacobs cited his influences this way: “Burning Man, the shores of Gotham in my dreams—or nightmares—[artist] Paul McCarthy’s White Snow, a frat party at the beach..." and Jamie Bochert, "who’s my muse, and she comes to the studio in these beautiful old gowns every day.”

    So will everybody be dressing in black, oversized Victoriana-inspired coats this Spring?

    People complain that most runway fashion doesn't seem wearable. These clothes really aren't, at least not by any modern woman.

    I kept wondering to myself.. Is this a joke? And if so, are we the punchline?

    Marc Jacobs Spring 2014 RTW slideshow (Vogue)