Tommy Hilfiger really knows how to put on a show. The longtime designer took over South Street Seaport in lower Manhattan and turned it into the equivalent of Galveston's Pleasure Pier, with a 40-foot-high ferris wheel, carnival games, fair food (hot dogs, fried mozarella sticks, cotton candy, lobster rolls) and a runway show featuring his collaboration with model Gigi Hadid.
The "Tommy Pier" celebrated Hilfiger's conversion to a "see-it-now, buy-it-now" strategy, as the 36 looks were immediately available on tommy.com/now or at a special pop-up shop labeled "Tommy X Gigi" on the pier. During the runway show, models appeared in twos in the same look, kind of like a fashion week version of the animals on Noah's ark.
Amid all the carnival hoopla, the models seemed a little lost in the crowd as they weaved their way along the boardwalk, although the fall collection is vintage Tommy, with satin track pants and jackets, basketball tanks, cropped hoodies with the Hilfiger red-and-white logo, printed dresses and silk bomber jackets. Sprinkled in were looks from the TommyXGigi collection, featuring a nautical theme — navy sailor pants with gold buttons, anchor print scarves, nubby sweaters, and leather “nautical boots.”
In the sultry evening — the muggy temperatures seems more akin to Texas than New York — some models looked really miserable in faux furs and velvet jumpsuits of the fall/winter collection. And it seemed ironic that the waif-like models passed a donut stand during their runway moves.
Pop superstar Taylor Swift was on the front row to support her gal pal, Hadid, and eagerly snapped away during the runway show, posting photos on her Instagram page.
It was quite a spectacle, recalling the days when over-the-top fashion week shows like this were a regular occurrence. It likely cost Hilfiger millions as he even arranged a helicopter overhead to film the happenings for livestream on his website.
But the likely results of spreading the Hilfiger brand in such a flashy way: Priceless.