>> Louis Vuitton is mounting a retrospective of Marc Jacobs's designs, to be unveiled during Milan Fashion Week; Robert Duffy suggests in a recent interview that Jacobs is ready to take on a couture line; and now, Jacobs has pushed back his New York Fashion Week show date — all fueling speculation that he's busy focusing on saying goodbye to Vuitton and doing a deal with Dior.
But, whatever happens, Jacobs won't be saying goodbye to one person — his business partner of 28 years, Robert Duffy. In a new profile exploring their partnership, Jacobs says of opportunities over the years: "Wherever we were, it would seem to the owner that one of us was the more valuable of the pair. But we always stood by each other ... it's not about what I do and what Robert does. The two of us together are Marc Jacobs. The two of us together are Vuitton. I don't think without him or without me we could achieve all that we've achieved."
More highlights from the profile, below.
Duffy on working with Jacobs for 28 years: "Marc honestly hasn't changed that much. He is very fragile and childlike. But when he's pushed against a wall and he really believes in something, he'll come back fighting. I think it's something he's learned from me. I guess that's how I've seen him change. He's more confident about what he has the right to say. He's definitely learned his craft and become an amazing technician. He could do a couture line. Of course, once he got sober, the natural thing to do was to get healthier. I don't know if you've ever known a heroin addict. He would eat cake, a whole wedding cake from a pastry shop. I would be like, 'You're the only fat heroin addict I know.'"
Duffy on what Jacobs would be without him: "I think if we weren't together, Marc would be a designer of renown, but he probably would have stayed small. He would never embrace social media. He wouldn't have done Marc by Marc. When I wanted to open Marc by Marc, he said, 'You think I want to design another line? You've got me working at Louis Vuitton, you've got me working here. You want to do it? It's yours. I'll come in and help when I need to.' But I have to be profitable, especially in the partnership with LVMH. I have to fund his collection line and the fashion shows."
Duffy on Jacobs's last-minute decisions: "Marc is famous for deciding things two weeks before the show, like, 'Oh my God, I want Stephen Jones to make polka-dot hats.' He expects the impossible from every single person. He expects everybody to just get with the program and get it done."
Jacobs on not always seeing eye-to-eye: "Sometimes we disagree on creative situations. He'll look at me like I'm out of my mind, like when I wanted to play 'Somewhere Over the Rainbow' for last fall's show. He said, 'You're not really going to use that?' And then he sort of said, 'All right.' He's never stopped me from doing something. Sometimes we see each other constantly and sometimes there are weeks or maybe even a month where we don't speak. We don't micromanage each other."