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Secondhand Rose: The Sweater Vest (Marc Jacobs for Dior?)


Louis Vuitton S/S 2008 x Richard Prince

Earlier this week it was rumored that Marc Jacobs is in talks to replace John Galliano at Christian Dior. This gave me pause. Marc Jacobs for Dior? I have been a fan of Marc Jacobs since his Perry Ellis days, but couldn’t quite grasp how his neo-grunge, and more recently ’70s revival aesthetic, would translate for the couturier. I needed to wrap my mind around this possible marriage so I hit the interwebs, furiously researching all things Marc to find the connect. Obviously, it was found in his work for Louis Vuitton. A little more over-the-top than his Marc Jacobs RTW, one can see the true showman in Marc with his Louis Vuitton work.  A personal favorite, with an energy quite similar to that of Galliano, is the Louis Vuitton S/S 2008 show. For this he drew directly from the work of artist Richard Prince by opening the show with a parade of “Prince-ian” nurses – a move that could have been lifted directly out of the book of Galliano.

** Consequently, this show features my second favorite runway music of all time: a mix courtesy of Daft Punk. My all-time favorite runway soundtrack was featured in Dior Homme S/S 2009 with a mix courtesy of Justice. So it seems both Marc and Galliano are fans of French electro-gods. Coincidence? I think not.**

Marc Jacobs F/W 2011

Further down the rabbit hole of research, I stumbled upon this look from Marc Jacobs F/W 2011 – and with that I fell in love with the sweater vest. Partly because I have a blouse similar to the one in the look that I never know what to wear with, and partly because it screams Ladies Who Lunch meets Rebel Without A Cause. A holdover from the black hole of ’70s fashion, the sweater vest is often overlooked, but paired with the right thing it is so so good.

Considering that the sweater vest is literally one step away from wearing a dickie, nobody is really on the hunt for them. So, for those of us who are, we are in luck. I have found a few amazing sweater vests rarely topping over $30.  First up: this geometric print vest. Mustard appears to be one of the colors for fall because I have been seeing it everywhere! With this vest you can incorporate a trend into a look that is very much your own. I couldn’t resit this heart print vest – a little kitchy but something you could sex up with a sheer blouse, a floaty chiffon mini and sky high heels. There are also more classic pieces – like the royal blue cable knit vest. If you’re not careful, something like this could venture into geriatric territory (not that there is anything wrong with that). You can maintain a classic, yet feminine appeal by putting a ’50s spin on it. Maybe leave your arms bare by just wearing a tank underneath, with some skinny jeans cuffed at the ankles and oxfords.  A crochet vest, like the one below, would be the best choice to recreate the Marc Jacobs look. Layer over a sheer blouse so just the right amount of brassiere peeks through.

Finally, the sweater vest to destroy all sweater vests – the sweater vest dress. This is my personal favorite, and something I hope to have in my closet real soon. This costs a little more than the rest – breaking the bank at $49.00 – but if you’re gonna do something, you might as well do it right.

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