"I can be a freak, every day of every week," boomed from the sound system. It was the new single from Estelle, debuting at the show (as she sat in the front row)—but it might just as well have been Jeremy Scott's own cri de coeur. Scott is one of fashion's freak-flag fliers, and proudly so. This is a guy who makes coats of Mickey Mouse gloves and dresses in Flintstones prints. But as his collections go, Fall was downright normal.
Hanger Appeal, his salute to fashion itself, featured a blend of sporty, salable print pieces (here, featuring a leggy fashion-mag illustration), riffs on the classics (Le Smoking; the JPG cone bra, recast as a pair of pasties/suspenders), and a lengthy section of Lucite jewel- and cross-covered dresses, bodysuits, and tops ("cross dressing," yuk, yuk). There were the showstoppers, of course, including the pièce de résistance, an elegant evening dress with a long train that was actually an attached slip, carried by the model on a gilded Jeremy Scott hanger.
Given our choice, we'd take the knits—the best of them, a batwing sweater that spelled out "Fashion" and "Style" with the arms extended—or the tricked-out Schott moto jackets, bedecked with fur sleeves, more jewels, and a profusion of brass J.S. plaques. Scott's always had a way of ribbing über-branding and practicing it, all at once. He knows that people do pray at the altar of fashion, hence all the crosses. But in a mostly black lineup (color appeared, as he put it, only when "chaperoned by black"), the clothes felt less jokey, more witty than in seasons past. It's his first show back in New York in years, and the city obviously agrees with him. Just take it from the song that played as he took his bow: He's in an "Empire State of Mind."