Marc Jacobs menswear designer Karl Aberg does not seem the kind of fellow to relish rush. Certainly when it comes to integrating the as-of-March defunct Marc by Marc Jacobs into this mainline collection, he’s decisively chilled. “Gradually we are going to encompass more, I think, stretching it further,” he said: “I’m really excited about it because it’s fun product and real stuff that’s maybe a bit less precious, which is a good thing.” Precious? This Marc Jacobs collection? Well, certainly, if you’re concerned with the materials. Hammered cream velvet slacks and jackets with sweatpants-style overlock stitching and a hefty break gleamed in the light like moonstone. Ringer tees and tank tops came in a fine-gauge cashmere, an opaque argyle tank in an alpaca mix, and its long-sleeved cousin in a silk and Lurex mix, “for a little tinsel.” Piped pajama tops both short-sleeved and long were dappled with chinoiserie blossoms or served up in a gray check silk mix treated to have a rice-papery crunch. The baddest boys in the room were the single-button, shawl-collar, kimono-cum-evening jackets that you could imagine l’homme Jacobean wearing not only to the Met Ball or some such palaver, but out back by the pool over budgie-smugglers and slides.
So while the fabrications had that gleam of preciousness, the vibe Aberg articulates through them did not. The interplay of Marc military staples and that souvenir chinoiserie emanated cultured army veteran, perhaps with a shady backstory: The Face but blessed with a brain, income, and a taste level that allows him to embrace dusky pink, crochet knits, and a pistachio seersucker jacket and seem not at all precious, but just so.