24.02.2015 - Charlotte Hagemann


Keeping up with the times


Army jackets, mouse slippers, wigs and the no-make-up-trend on the catwalk. The fashion label Marc Jacobs never seems to lose inspiration. Though the brand is working on so many collections simultaneously - sunglasses, kids fashion and even an own make-up line – Marc Jacobs stays true to it’s origins.

Hard facts, short introduction

In 1986, seven years before founding Marc Jacobs International Company, L.P., Jacobs designed his first own collection bearing the Marc Jacobs label. A few years earlier, in 1984, the designer met his business partner Robert Duffy. This encounter would be a recipe for great success and the working relationship has lasted until today. Jacobs has wide array of experience within the fashion industry. In 1988 he was hired as head of design for Perry Ellis after the labels’ founder passed away. Duffy and Jacobs both joined the taskforce as President and Vice President. After being dismissed from the company in 1992 for having designed a grunge collection, Duffy and Jacobs launched Marc Jacobs International in 1993. In 1997 he was appointed creative director at Louis Vuitton and designed the labels first ready-to-wear collection. In 2013 Jacobs left Vuitton to return to New York and refocus his attention exclusively on the Marc Jacobs brand, dedicating more time to business and investor relations by taking the label public. The operating company, Marc Jacobs International, is owned nearly entirely by the LVMH group.

There are around 200 Marc Jacobs stores in 80 different countries worldwide. The once called “enfant terrible“ of the fashion industry, Marc Jacobs, has built an empire - a success story founded on hard work and dedication. His runway collections are of the most important during fashion week and a must for all connoisseurs. Marc Jacobs’ extraordinary talent has been rewarded on a number of occasions. In 1987, he was the youngest designer to have ever been awarded one of the fashion industry's highest prizes, the Council of Fashion Designers of America's Perry Ellis Award for "New Fashion Talent". In 2011, after numerous Women’s, Men and Accessory Designer of the Year Awards he received the council of Fashion Designers Lifetime Achievement Award. Tremendous succes and recognition has made Marc Jacobs one of the opinion leaders in the fashion industry today. His entourage includes not only fashion grande dame’s such as American Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour, but also actress Scarlett Johanson and model Kate Moss. Since 1998 Marc Jacobs’ campaigns have been shot exclusively by Juergen Teller – excluding that one with Miley Cyrus.

Can a design be typical?

There are several iconic Marc Jacobs designs. Many of his garments are known for having a clean cut and detailed finishing - often childish with oversized buttons for example. Some of his collections have been reminiscent of a reinterpretation of the Alice in Wonderland story - the childhood, that even by growing up, is never forgotten and where normal things seem so big and over the top. Marc Jacobs’ father died when he was very young and he spent most of his childhood at his grandmother’s, house, who among other things taught him how to knit. Jacobs seeks out these childhood memories for inspiration in his designs.

But let’s consider Marc Jacobs design from another perspective: the costumer. Who is the Marc Jacobs women? His collections are a reflection of a self-confident, strong and perhaps rebellious woman. It is no secret that the brand loves to shock and provoke with its designs. Marc Jacobs seems to always try and find ways to combine femininity with boyish interweavings. The current Spring Summer collection is a great exemplification of this: combining a uniform with a short skirt means provocation. And there have been so many articles about the no-make-up trend all over the world, which caused a big fashion world buzz.

There are tons of It-pieces from the Marc Jacobs collection: a couple of years ago, in 2006, every fashionista needed the iconic Stam-Bag. This bag owes its name to Jacobs’ Canadian model friend Jessica Stam. But despite of all the staple garments and it-pieces that have become popular around the globe, the Jacobs’ most successful feature is to to reinvent the brand over and over again. So, what’s next? We’ll never know! But of course, we are waiting anxiously for the upcoming seasons.

Short Facts


The product range in the Marc Jacobs empire, including the sister brands, is huge! But the brand is more than a mere clothing line, it is a lifestyle that everyone can be a part of. Those who can’t afford an item from one of the runway collections, can just get one of the very popular key rings or a t-shirt from one of the lower priced labels. Those still looking for inspiration can pay a visit to the Marc Jacobs bookstore, Bookmarc NY, in New York City’s West Village. Having a piece from Marc Jacobs means, being up to date with the newest trends in fashion and living the Marc Jacobs lifestyle.


Trends, trends, trends. The Marc Jacobs design team is very attentive to the goings-on in the world, and they transport these into the collection and onto the runway – even if the events are negative. Turning the Marc Jacobs fashion show into a guaranteed spectacle.

Designer History

1986 – present Marc Jacobs

Who Wears it?


1986 - Let it begin

Marc Jacobs designs his first collection under Marc Jacobs. This is his first ever collection after finishing Parsons The New School for Design. – where he directly afterwards starts to work for the label Perry Ellis.

1988 - First steps in the industry

Jacobs becomes head of design at Perry Ellis, following the death of its namesake and founder.

1993 - The own company

Marc Jacobs and his business partner Robert Duffy do not only work on new collections for other labels. In 1993 they their own licensing and design company: Marc Jacobs International Company, L.P.

1994 - Go for the boys

Jacobs wants to prove to the world that he isn´t just a fashion designer for women’s wear and introduces his first menswear line.

1997 - Paris, but in a good way

Marc Jacobs decides to move to Paris and become creative director of Louis Vuitton. Louis Vuitton and Marc Jacobs are both part of LVMH, making the move easier. LVMH owns 33 percent of Marc Jacobs trade mark today.

Nearly ten years after founding his own label, Jacobs opens his first ever Marc Jacobs store in Manhattan, New York. Today it is a must-to-visit while taking a walk through the village.

2001 - A little less expensive

The secondary line Marc by Marc Jacobs is launched with great success. The design studio moves to London and is led by the two young designers Katie Hillier and Luella Bartley.

2010 - Going online is such a big deal

The brand decides to sell their clothes and accessories in their own online shop. Meanwhile the whole collection includes not only ready-to-wear and accessories such as bags, shoes, sunglasses and watches, but perfumes, a kids line and make-up as well.

2014 - Hashtag MARC

For the Spring Summer 2015 Marc by Marc Jacobs ad campaign the label casts the models via the social media channel Instagram. Starting in April 2014, the announcement reaches nearly 70,000 people who post photos of themselves using the hashtag #castmemarc.

2015 - Plans for the future

It takes a while, maybe a couple of years, to take the Marc Jacobs brand to the stock market. But for Marc Jacobs himself it is really exciting to work on such a big project. For the next years, there are a couple of plans to launch new product lines under the brand.





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