NEW YORK: Marc Jacobs drew a beautiful and audacious line under a New York Fashion Week that stood out for its optimism and bright yellows and oranges.
As he has in the past, Jacobs on Thursday chose the Armory in southern Manhattan rather than the Fashion Week headquarters at the Lincoln Center for his Spring-Summer 2012 show.
The theatrical choreography saw about 50 unworldly outfits mixing materials and turning conventions upside down.
Cellophane for raincoats, fringed coats, fake crocodile for straight yellow or dark red skirts, sparkly turbans and loafers -- Jacobs was as innovative as ever, and that was before he unveiled the strange, transparent cowboy boots.
Nylon, cellophane, organza, silicone and silk socks to go with golden high heels were just some of the materials he used, setting up a show to delight the celebrity fan club, including Sofia Coppola and actress Elle Fanning.
Earlier Thursday, Ralph Lauren won lengthy standing ovations for his 1920s-inspired collection, recalling the "Great Gatsby" days of vintage jade silk chiffon dresses and high-waisted, side-button trousers.
Cloche hats, pinstriped blazers and flapper-style beaded gowns, including with an ostrich-feather headscarf, completed the look.
For all the fantasy, this was a Fashion Week that could not exclude the outside world.
It opened as New York marked the 10th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 attacks and Marc Jacobs asked to hold his preview until the end because of delays in preparations caused by Hurricane Irene.
There was also a whiff of scandal over the Guli collection from the daughter of Uzbekistan's authoritarian president Islam Karimov.
After human rights groups complained about her participation, the fashion week took the unusual measure of canceling the show.
Instead, the Guli collection, mostly flowing silk dresses, was unveiled in the chic Cipriani restaurant.
Overall this week, the colors were resolutely optimistic and sharp and a new tech-friendly approach allowed fashionistas to follow many collections live on their computers and phones, without having invitations to the Lincoln Center.
A newly pregnant Beyonce, Michael Douglas and Whoopie Goldberg were among the A-listers in the front rows.
London Fashion Week starts Friday and runs through September 21. AGENCIES