New York Fashion Week Notes – Day 5

(Ralph Rucci review later today)

The Man of the Hour (glass)

Marc Jacobs Fall 2011 Collection
(All Photos:

It was a no brainer that Marc would change directions and go in a completely different direction for fall, and that the runway would not resemble spring in any way, shape, or form. But who could have guessed that the collection he showed last night (right on time once again) would be literally ‘all about’ shape and form and that the object of his affection would shift from YSL to Azzedine Alaia? (Well, for this season anyway. Marc will always keep his love affair with the great Yves alive but when it comes to his fashion fixation, I guess you could say he’s a fickle guy).

The overall mood and feeling was one of structure and rigid shape, with the supremely feminine emphasis on the waist. A taut, curvy, hourglass silhouette pervaded and peplums abounded. Skirts were primarily pencil thin and hit just below the knee, and jackets were molded to the body. While waists were whittled down, sleeves were often rounded and blown up, (this had the effect of making the waists seem even smaller). Shoulders were often dropped and armholes, roomy. Primarily, it was all about a cropped jacket, or one that emphasized the waist, and interestingly, in a season that has been all about coats thus far, there was really only one coat shown (and waist defining, elongated version in dusty blue, and shown over gray flannel pants).

When pants appeared, they were low waisted, and cropped. The footwear consisted of a high heeled bootie, usually in black, and made of a shiny vinyl like material (I’m sure it wasn’t), which hit at the ankle or a little higher, and legs were encased in sheer black patterned hose (dots, lace, point d’esprit). I think the hosiery industry should be happy this season. Speaking of dots and lace, Marc used both lavishly and he actually went a bit ‘dotty’ this season, using large dots quite liberally, including the accessories. As for lace, when it showed up (and show up it did, as tops, dresses, skirts, pants), it was of the thick, weighty, re-embroidered variety, resembling armor.

These are sophisticated, grown up, and quite dressed up clothes with a couture like feeling, and not for shrinking violets, played out in a palette of black, white, gray, indigo, with hits of red, green, brown. Even the sportswear separates had a dressed up and quite sophisticated look, with structured tops and skirts covered with large paillette like discs resembling fish scales, (these were applied to thick wool or tweed surfaces). It would be impossible to say exactly what the fabrics were, but it’s a safe bet they were customized. Interestingly, in a season of furs, Marc kind of played them down, opting instead for a thick mouton-like fabric, which showed up as cropped jackets, or in some cases, was used only on the voluminous sleeves, adding to their hefty proportions. The models’ hair was slicked back away from their faces and almost each one had a hat (a small structured hat which almost resembled a tiny helmet, which was fastened onto a band to keep it in place, and worn to one side).

Love it or hate it, the wonderful thing about Marc, is that you always leave his shows wanting to re-evaluate your wardrobe.

– Marilyn Kirschner

Carolina Throws in the ‘Gauntlet’

Carolina Herrera Fall 2011 Collection
(All Photos:

Carolina Herrera’s 41 piece fall collection shown yesterday morning, mixed elements of day with elements of evening; was highly textural and ornamental, and an exercise in shades of gray with gray degrade, pyrite, gunmetal and metal sequin embroidery playing off the more rustic and humble fabrics such as dark gray wool flannel and felt. It was also quite organic in both color palette (rust, greige, jasper red, amethyst, turquoise, bone), and the use of an abstract ‘feather’ and ‘waterfall’ print. Sculptural shapes defined face framing necklines, knee length pencil dresses, dress coats, and ‘wing’ skirts, and the use of sculptural gloves on almost every outfit (with their exaggerated gauntlets) added drama.

The gloves, whose proportions gave them the look of elegant oven mitts, were designed by Shaneen Husham, and they were statement makers, all but replacing jewelry (one suede pair in particular, was covered with gunmetal and primrose embroidery). Narrow belts by Bennett Liberty, Wolford stockings, and elegant high heeled pumps (Manolo Blahnik for Carolina Herrera) were the only other accessories used.

Speaking of accessories, I have to say something about all those teeny tiny little clutch bags which are constantly shown on many a runway, including most recently, that of Jason Wu and Alexander Wang. Chic they are, and how I wish I was the kind of gal who could actually get by with something so small (most of the ones I’ve seen wouldn’t even fit my cell phone). But how impractical for real life, unless you have a limo waiting at your disposal, or an assistant following behind you and carrying all your things for you. I love all those celebrity editors who completely eschew handbags and are never seen with one (Anna Wintour has admitted she doesn’t use one because they break up the line of her clothing; and the same can be said of the new editor-in-chief of French Vogue, Emanuel Alt. I spotted her at the shows this past week, clad in black but carrying a thin red book (thinner than she is if that’s possible) – not a bag. As I said, how nice to have a limo.

– Marilyn Kirschner

The Daily Bet by Rhonda Erb

Moroccanoil Luminous Hairspray

Use this lightweight spray to keep your hair in place without making it feel sticky or stiff. It is infused with argan oil and leaves your hair with a luminous, healthy looking shine.

Available  and exclusively in fine salons, MSRP $21.00

Unlimited by Marc Ecko

Marc Ecko’s second fragrance for men is a mix of aromatic notes that is sensual and stimulating. It was inspired by the culture of the streets and is packaged in a canister that looks similar to a can of spray paint.

Available at:, 3.4 oz. Eau de Toilette Spray, $55.00

Win a 3.4 oz. bottle of Unlimited by Marc Ecko Eau de Toilette Spray (Click to enter your e-mail address, remember to put “Unlimited” in the subject line). Register your e-mail before 11:59 PM EST February 18, 2011. Three lucky winners will be chosen at random and notified by e-mail.

Marilyn Kirschner

I am a long time fashion editor with 40+ years of experience. As senior market of Harper's Bazaar for 21 years I met and worked with every major fashion designer in the world and covered all of the collections in Paris, London, Milan and New York. I was responsible for overall content, finding and pulling in the best clothes out there, and for formulating ideas and stories.

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