Sending Gisele Bündchen out to open and close your show is not the gesture of someone who shies from the spotlight. Coming from Marc Jacobs, it seemed a declaration of a new direction: After spending the first ten years at his own label as the indie/artsy crowd's favorite designer, he’s itching to move over into the multimillion-dollar mainstream. And why not? If knockoffs are the opinion polls of fashion, he’s won by a landslide, season after season.
Adept as he is at reading his customer's mind, Jacobs knows she doesn't take well to dictates; her closet is her playground. For spring, she's got a proper/naughty thing going on: sort of Mona Lisa Smile meets Secretary. (Wait, isn't that Maggie Gyllenhaal in the front row?) The proper showed up as elegant fit-and-flare tweed skirts, printed and pin-tucked silk blouses, lace-covered dresses, and great tweedy coats with just-so mink collars, all in superb fabrics and whispery soft colors like cream, mint, turquoise, and icy blue. And the naughty? That would be the earsplitting Distillers soundtrack, the saucy plunge necklines, and the teetering Vargas Girl pumps that gave the models' runway walks a hip-swiveling come-hither attitude. Jacobs' eveningwear gets more sophisticated each season, and this time he recalled Hollywood at its height; his gowns were tumbling cascades of chiffon or charmeuse in jewel tones that polished off the show, literally.