Designer Marlon Gobel
Photos: Ken Pao for models.com
Text: Jonathan Shia
“It’s important to do a show, otherwise there won’t be any more,” said designer Marlon Gobel after his inspired outing for Fall 2011 at the Park Avenue Armory. “Everyone does plain presentations now, but you need to give people an experience.” Setting up shop in the long hallway fronting Park, with one of the building’s glorious stained-glass windows as a backdrop, Gobel sent out a collection of looks on Thursday inspired by secret societies and fraternal orders—”the secrets that guys keep”—complete with tassels in different colors denoting hierarchies and soft tweeds and velvets emblazoned with mystical unicorns.
Gobel has become known for his use of eye-catching colors, the bright greens and oranges of Spring appearing as rich jewel tones for Fall. There were reinvented staples of classic all-American wear, like shawl-neck sweaters knit in wide cables and a dinner tuxedo paired with a very expensive-looking pair of jeans. The standout showpieces were a quartet of velvet blazers hand-painted with copies of Romantic works, each depicting a natural environment, from a sun-flooded valley to a raging storm at sea. The shoes, covered in gold and silver metallic pieces or festooned with jingling bells, were from Christian Louboutin’s first men’s collection. The richness and detailing of the footwear, Gobel said, “encouraged me to take it up a notch.” As in previous seasons, Gobel dug deep into the rich heritage of Americana, looking to a time when men in fezzes sat around at the Shriners Lodge and performed mysterious ceremonies. “There should be more places now where guys can go and be buddies and be supportive of each other,” he said.
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