While New York City commuters chaotically scrambled through Grand Central Terminal on a typical Friday evening, security details ushered the likes of Sofia Richie Grainge, Central Cee and Kelly Rutherford through the landmarks’ Vanderbilt Wing, en route to the venerated Oyster Bar. On the menu that night, however, was not mollusks; rather, the fine eatery’s planned service was much more voguish: all 56 looks from Tommy Hilfiger’s Fall/Winter 2024 collection.
Inside, the brand’s signature red, white and blue hues touched the walls, the tables, the seats and the front-row fits. Babbling attendees were swiftly silenced and seated around the restaurant’s lavish booths, thanks to the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s famous words: “Stand clear of the closing doors, please!” Signaling the fashion show’s commencement, the quiet was filled by Questlove, who produced a soundtrack that was inspired by the Grand Central venue, as well as the city’s five boroughs. This was Tommy Hilfiger’s “New York Moment.”
“This is preppy, all-American and cool,” Hilfiger told Hypebeast of the collection backstage. Those are three words that have long categorized the fabled American designer’s legacy-defining fashions. For him, consistency truly is key. However fatigued those cliché words of advice may be, let Tommy be proof of their validity. His collegiate styles built the foundation for his fashion empire upon its founding in 1985; today, their reliability is the reason that the brand saw revenues increase by 4% to reach $1.2 billion USD in the third quarter of last year. Now, it’s a game of reworking, refining and remaking that identity.
“This line is more elevated,” Hilfiger said. “The collection has a lot of our core DNA, but it’s filled with newness in shape, fabric and texture.” On the runway, the brand’s classic ’90s silhouettes — rugby shirts, straight blazers and varsity jackets — were done up in textiles including corduroys, herringbones and chalky-pinstripes. Outside of Americana’s storied hues, the line was a fan of the neutrals: tans, beiges, browns, greys, black and white. Amidst an abundance of hero pieces, Tommy named his favorites: “I’m crazy about all of the Chino pants that are now oversized and very wide-legged with high waists,” he said.
Overall, literal iconography was minimal, only rarely claiming real estate on outerwear with the letter “H.” The brand’s codes were capable of speaking for themselves: classic stripes adorned cable-knit sweaters, fitted cardigans, big scarves and statement neckties; smart tailoring added to the designer’s academic uniform, and notes of athleticism fueled the brand’s casual sportswear closet. It was a line of signatures, with no meddling necessary.
To much applause, Hilfiger descended the runway alongside Jon Batiste, who performed a high-octane rendition of his lead track “Freedom,” for the grand finale. The Grammy-winner danced with attendees, serenaded Anna Wintour and climbed atop the furniture to reach all parts of the room in what was an exhilarating spectacle to witness. “Never a dull moment in fashion,” Hilfiger exclaimed.
See Tommy Hilfiger’s Fall/Winter 2024 collection in the gallery above, and stay tuned to Hypebeast for more New York Fashion Week coverage.