Marc Jacobs Imagines a World Where Everyone Just Ignores Last Names


When it comes to the fashion industry, I am Anne Hathaway’s character in The Devil Wears Prada, just after that Meryl Streep’s monologue about the life and death of a trend: largely indifferent yet strangely intimidated. And, after reading the profile of Marc Jacobs in this month’s New York Times Style Magazine, I remain in the periphery of the periphery of that world—mesmerized by the designers as characters in popular culture but almost entirely uninterested in their designs.

I could not spot a Marc Jacobs design if it DMed me a butt pic, but I have a very specific idea of Jacobs the man in my head. And, for the most part, Sarah Nicole Prickett’s piece has confirmed my assumptions. A lifetime spent in therapy (he’s been going since age 7) has made it easy for him to talk about himself, and he does plenty of it while smoking Marlboro Lights and eating a three-course lunch—“each essentially a deconstructed smoothie in a shallow bowl”—in the silent and “fragrant” backyard of his West Village home.

Here’s Jacobs (who’s been sober since 2007) on the “decadence” of smoking:

“If somebody is eating cherries and drinking champagne on a street corner in an expensive dress, it’s a decadent sort of behavior, but it’s kind of playing at something. You know what I mean.”

I don’t know if I know what you mean, but I think I know what you mean, and I like the way it sounds!

Here he is on why he doesn’t like using last names. I think I said the exact same thing when I was 18:

“I think it was after the Caitlyn Jenner thing, and I just said, like, can we just start calling people by their name? You know, not what they do for a living, not what their sexual preference is, not their age, not who they’re related to. It’s 2015. Just say, ‘Hi, I’m Caitlyn.’ ‘Hi, I’m Marc.’ It’s not like, ‘I’m Marc, homosexual Jew from New York.’ You know, ‘fashion designer.’”

Here’s Marc on a recent dream he had:

“It’s a recurring theme: I’m up against something uncomfortable or difficult, and just as I feel like I’m making some progress, there’s an end to the dream that says no, you’re not getting anywhere, you have to start over. This time, the nightmare was so bad that it felt like I was awake thinking about it, rather than asleep and dreaming. Which is another recurring thing, when I can’t differentiate between creating a scenario and dreaming it.”

Here’s Prickett on Marc’s tattoo:

One of his tattoos is an all-caps “perfect” on his wrist, reminding him that he’s exactly who and where he’s supposed to be at that moment, and that everything is good because it’s there. It’s really about acceptance, not perfection.

And on his frequent cases of deja vu:

That day at lunch, 18 cigarettes or 90-some minutes into our conversation, he tells me that he often gets déjà vu, an experience he relates to the alternate realities of “The Matrix” (1999).

Yes, yes, yes. I don’t care what you’re walking down the runway for S/S 2015, I just want you to use the word “decadent” a lot, casually mention The Matrix, and discuss the emotional and creative effects of your recurring nightmares.

And I want to wear a cerulean sweater while listening.

Contact the author at [email protected].

Image via Getty.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Share Tweet Submit Pin