Streetwear seems to be more and more coming of age. Some trendy designers have snatched up positions at the legendary mansion, releasing baggy suits and flashy sweaters. Heck, Kith recently teamed up with luxury bedding brand Parachute for a signature linen and duvet cover. The idea of what stylish, creative people wear is shifting into something more fitted, elegant and refined.
Tommy Hilfiger is well positioned to capitalize on this shift, especially among millennials and Gen Z shoppers. Over the years, the renowned designer has expanded the traditional code of preparation and steered his international brand in a more youth-centred and street-influenced direction. This continued for Hilfiger’s spring 23 collection, which the designer previewed at the brand’s Manhattan offices. “I like to stay away from sweat,” says Hilfiger, who showed off a pair of perfectly cut chinos that complemented an oversized cable-knit sweater. “We’ve been doing streetwear for many, many years, and I love that it’s become more elegant.”
Hilfiger is excited about today’s fashion landscape and what he sees on the streets of New York? “Proportion,” he said. “There are also new shapes.” This is definitely reflected in the collection in terms of design. There are many pieces that fit well with the trends and tastes of younger shoppers. There’s a lime green (a frequent color in the collection) chunky sweater with a textured 3D waffle print. Hilfiger pointed to the dress, then held up a pair of equally bright neon pleated trousers, saying it looked great. There were also platform loafers, jacquard baggy shorts, low-waisted miniskirts and cropped sweaters. When he showed off garments of amazing size and silhouette, it was clear that Hilfiger had his sights firmly set on tomorrow. (Many of the sweaters and hoodies in the collection are made from recycled polyester, and sustainable denim is used throughout.)
Another major influence on the nautical collection: Andy Woo Hall and the Hazy Days he spent at his residence in Montauk, New York (some of which were captured in depth in the recent Netflix documentary The Diary of Andy Warhol record of). Hilfiger, who has paid tribute to Warhol several times, says his memory of the art icon still haunts him to this day. “I met Andy when ’80 moved here and he took me to his factory,” he recalled, sharing his thoughts on watching hotel artists Muhammad Ali, Diana Awe of Ross’s paintings, David Bowie et al. “It took me by surprise.”
“I always associate brands with music and musicians,” the designer continued. “But then I thought, ‘Okay, but Andy’s doing pop culture icons.’ I started with a bunch of people in Hollywood — sports, music, influencers.”
With this collection of washed styles, comfortable fabrics and clever tailoring, it’s easy to imagine yourself as an off-duty artist on vacation in a private enclave. Or at least feel like one.