By Adaeze Ibechukwu

Marc Jacobs is Louis Vuitton. Oh Gosh! This wasn’t what was expected at the Paris fashion week were Marc Jacobs bade his farewell to the Louis Vuitton brand using the Spring 2014 designs.
According to WWD Marc Jacobs is leaving Louis Vuitton to focus on growing the Marc Jacobs brand. The fashion funeral winessed at the Paris fashion week was indeed a compilation of Marc’s greatest hits as we predicted, but done all in black.

This season, America’s most powerful designer bid an emotional farewell to 16 years at the world’s most famous fashion brand, the note referring to his business partner Duffy and LVMH chief, Arnault. The darkly glamorous collection was staged against sets from several of his memorable shows: the carousel, the “Night Porter” elevators, the railway station clock, even a pair of escalators. All were now coated in black, the most chic colour since the Victorians.

Dedicated to the women who inspire him, including Jane Birkin, Anna Wintour, Lady Gaga, Édith Piaf, Vivienne Westwood, Miuccia Prada, Coco Chanel, Rei Kawakubo, Jacob’s Vuitton finale was “to the showgirl in all of us”.

And the showgirl certainly came through. Models wore risqué sheer dresses and tops with stunning beaded embellishments and workmanship. There were elaborate feather headdresses (a toast to Paris showgirls) and touches of American sportswear, including a varsity jacket with Paris written on the back. But apart from the sequined Louis Vuitton graffiti logo tights, Jacobs remarkably managed to sway from too camp and towards a noirish 1930s drama. Wide-leg, blue utility jeans worn under these sexy tops were a curious and interesting touch.

It was all perfect for Jacobs’ poignant, resolute finale for a French company that has defined him as surely as he has defined it. Before he took the job, in 1997, with his business partner helping him, Louis Vuitton didn’t have fashion. It was an esteemed luggage maker. But Jacobs gradually gave it credibility through his sense of what was new and relevant. He also, in a corporate environment that might fill some with apprehension, became a more proficient designer.

I sincerely hope that, someone more talented quickly fills in the shoes of this gifted designer.

Au reviour Marc Jacobs!