Tommy Hilfiger takes pole position in Milan
Tommy Hilfiger took his 'Tommy Now' show concept to the Continent this weekend, staging the largest show of Milan Fashion Week on Sunday night.
With icy winds descending from the Alps onto the plains of Lombardy, where Milan is located, the audience of 2,000 almost scurried into MICO, a giant exhibition space within the Fiera di Milano. Inside they found a mini racetrack and Mercedes Formula One racecars, and pit teams, with the Tommy Hilfiger logo on the cars and proudly worn by pit teams. The American designer is the new F1 Mercedes sponsor for next season.
The catwalk was a racetrack, upon which Gigi Hadid opened the show attired in leather biker leggings and a cropped bandeau top, Tommy’s logo to the fore. Tight motorbike jackets, cropped half way up the torso; striped wrap minis and checkered flag swimsuits for the gals. And leather varsity jackets in mixes of stretch and lambskin; mixed up down vests in blends of chalk-stripe and kicking fabric; and abstract camouflage shirts for the guys in this co-ed show.
Nearly everything contained some element of Tommy’s red, white and blue logo. Gigi was very much the star of this latest 'See Now, Buy Now' collection, which one could acquire immediately after the show, both online and inside a pit stop at the fashionable racetrack for the night. Though Signorina Hadid did have her rivals; notably Hailey Baldwin, daughter of Stephen and niece of Alec, who emoted in a striped combo of pool shorts and a cropped shirt, under a cozy cardigan.
The invitations were laminates, like pit passes for the paddock of a F1 race-team. The soundtrack had all sorts of squealing tires and rumbling exhausts. All told, this was Hilfiger’s fourth and most inventive See Now Buy Now show, as he gained traction via the racecar theme to develop some fresh approaches to his style.
“I could not be happier to be here. I reckon if Milan is good enough for Giorgio Armani and Angela Missoni; or Prada and Gucci, then it is most definitely good enough for me,” chuckled Hilfiger.
Plenty of action in the front row of this grand prix: Olivia Palermo, Eva Herzigova, Sabrina Carpenter, Jasmine Sanders (aka Golden Barbie), Bar Refaeli, and Shawn Yue, a Chinese icon who had Asian bloggers in a tailspin. Racing greats included Eddie Irvine, who drove for Ferrari when Tommy sponsored the Italian marque 20 years ago, and current world champion Lewis Hamilton.
When someone admired Irvine’s waxed leatherjacket, he laughed: “Tommy gave this to me two decades ago, and I loved it, and I’m still wearing it. Not bad, eh? Though it does take lot of painful running to keep in shape for it.”
The night before Tommy worked the crowd in Garage Italia, entrepreneur Lapo Elkann’s clever new club and dining space, built inside a restored Art Deco garage. Part of a deal the ever-ambitious Lapo has put together with Carlo Cracco, Italy’s most a famous media-friendly chef.
Though the biggest star was Hilfiger, the fastest growing American brand in Europe this decade. And the icing on the cake was his mega show in the busiest and biggest Milan fashion week in the past five years.
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