After 16 years as the creative director at Louis Vuitton, Marc Jacobs exited, the Spring 2014 collection his last contribution to a relatively new fashion powerhouse. His design prowess was on full display during his tenure at what is likely THE most well know luxury house in the world. I personally was deep into the Marc Jacobs koolaid I must admit, spending many an hour being amazed by fire as I would make my way through the newest pieces streaming into my favorite space on Union Square. And yet ironically enough, though every one here on earth and in space as well is aquainted with the LV moniker and the ever expanding collection of purses, wallets, luggage and such, my guess is that only a small fraction of the populace at large, hard core fashionistas the exception, is aware of the ready to wear line. Or maybe they've heard about the line, but never gotten up close and personal with some of the most spectacular ready to wear there is. Jacobs lovingly planted the seed and watered his garden well, and left a legacy to be proud of as Nicolas Ghesquiere took the reins after 15 years as the much heralded director at Balenciaga. It struck me as a curious choice, as the styles of the two designers were not particularly simpatico, Jacobs of the more is better opulence camp, and Ghesquiere more enamored of the avante garde.
No one knew what to expect from the first post Jacobs entry, and Lord only knows I was doing some nail biting, wondering how in the world any collection could be tantamount to the glorious fare brought forth every fall winter by Jacobs. Then came Paris fashion week in March and the breathless anticipation was rewarded with a much ballyhooed collection of pared down separates reflecting a striking homage to the 70's, a vision of what was to come throughout the spring 2015 collections. Some of us were transiently crestfallen, with the lack of flounces, flourishes, and sumptuous embellished creations we had come to expect. But then, as I revisited the images on style.com and saw them plastered on the cherry positions in Bazaar and Elle, I started hearing the siren call.......when I got my mitts on the clothing and was reminded of the impeccable craftsmanship with respect to anything coming out of the LV house, I was smitten. Ghesquiere tapped into the 70's zeitgeist with the A line silhouettes, mini skirts, and patchwork contingent, but threw irony into the mix with the sizzling hot fitted dresses with the plunging neck lines and side zippers, and the skinny pvc leggings. Then came the Resort collection, cementing the notion that Ghesquiere was indeed up to the task of following Jacobs. An eclectic collection composed of singular nonderivative pieces, it was a continuous delight to the senses, leaving no doubt that our burgeoning fascination with the new creative director was warranted.
FALL WINTER 2014:
The leather jackets are easy, flattering, and light and slim enough to work underneath a vest when the fog and snow roll in. The patchwork concoction to the right is limited, only TWO ordered for North America. However, the short variety is in the store now and a nice option. Great over jeans, one of the mini skirts (if one dares), OR, the ubiquitous maxi dresses which are all the rage these days.
I happen to love the skirts, especially the deep orange one which reminds me of the Great Pumpkin. These "minis" skim the knee on we shorter gals and would be smashing with opaque tights and boots of any variety. And those belts are going to be all the rage, you heard it here first.
The tunic above was an interesting blend of ease and lux, with the easy A line silhouette in fawn ultrasuede combined with spectacular intricate embroidery, weaving fine multicolored metallic threads with thousands of TEENY TINY sequins. Quite breathtaking in person. (But beware the snag effect).
The deep V neck leather and tweed dress made a splash on Jennifer Connelly, and was a genius mix of hip and alluring. Zipper up or down. As it turns out, the runway version was quite limited, made soley for La Connelly. To the right is the actual ready to wear version, black wool replacing the leather. If you want to be the hippest chick in the office or at your college reunion, wear this dress with a blouse or thin wool sweater as an underpinning. Should you choose to be s c a n d a l o u s, wear as is.
This was my personal favorite of the collection, and the one piece I had to have after seeing this in person at the store. If you look closely, you can see most of the colors of the crayola box, making this more versatile than you might think at first glance. For the youngsters, this is a hip, mod mini skirt, but for me, a striking and unique tunic. I threw this on over black leather LV leggings and a blue silk shirt and was good to go. Would work well over jeans, leggings, opaque tights....
You gotta love a collection that includes a NEOPRENE coat with shearling collar, shown over a coquettish mini skirt, AND a riding jacket with PVC leggings. Wacky, wonderful, and wearable. H U Z Z A H!
As we head towards winter, with snow already falling everywhere but in San Francisco, RESORT is upon us, ironically enough. The moniker belies the versatility and spectrum of looks in most collections, and the first brought to us from Ghesquiere for Louis Vuitton is no exception. The pieces run the gamut from south beach sexy (calling all Kardashians) to 70's cool, to space age mod, to outrageous opulence!
The sexy contingent, easily layered as needed to match one's sensibility of the moment.
I think of these entries as the latter day leisure suits, but you know, WAY cooler! The black suit was on display at a recent Louis Vuitton event to showcase the new resort collection, and more impressive up close. Scuba microfiber fabrication with lambskin leather collar and cuff details, and red top stitching. The rouged leather belt gives everyone the needed waist!
Great comfy piece to throw over jeans. Timeless.
A standout of the collection and one of the most intricate pieces, (akin to a couture spiderweb) only apparent up close, definitely a collector's piece. The deep pink color is the cherry on the sundae.
Variations on the floral theme, pulling us back to the 70's, whilst pushing us into the future with leather peplum and racing stripes. With the front zipper this dress can morph into a light weight jacket OR a tunic.
Even the beachy aquatic entries can be layered. Ghesquiere certainly covered much territory in this collection, which speaks to his abundant synaptic activity, and to his welcome disregard for that most overrated of concerns, "cohesion".....yawn.
"I want to build a wardrobe with the girls at Louis Vuitton. And if they invest in a skirt or a jacket or a dress, I make the promise not that it is never going to be completely démodé , or never out of fashion, but I make the commitment that I am never going to say, ‘Ha-ha, everything you thought was good three months ago is now for the garbage.’ " Nicholas Ghesquiere
Seriously, something for EVERYONE. And most of the collection can be worn all year round in a temperate climate. The little red leather jacket was a stunner, with subtle white topstitching, killer over jeans or a skirt.
This was the COOLEST of the cool, a black leather dress with front zipper (I mean, who doesn't think that is HOT?!?), bonded with neoprene, made curiously playful with the peplum. My personal favorite of the lot. Talk about multipurpose, a dress, vest, and tunic rolled into one. D R O O L. Emma Peel of Avenger's fame gives this stunner two thumbs up!
The piece de la resistance, only TWO will be available for North America. ($21,000 in case anyone out there would like this scrumptuous showstopper). Sigh.
And for the purse aficianados, the soon to be heavily coveted:
Here is to the beginning of a beautiful friendship, Nicolas Ghesquiere and Louis Vuitton.
Images and quotes brought to you from www.style.com.