The catchall name of this collection, Modern Prep, is one you’ve no doubt heard before from Tommy Hilfiger. It’s essentially his raison d’être. But this particular interpretation of it, likely conceived with great input from consulting designer Simon Spurr and stylist Karl Templer, pushed a more pointed fashion agenda than Hilfiger’s ever done.
Though the collection cycled through various motifs of Americana—from camouflage to varsity jackets and chinos to seersucker and sailor stripes—there was something distinctly European in its stance. You saw it in the savvy slimmed silhouettes, the knit polos, the handheld bags, the avant-garde look of sailor stripes splashed onto pant legs. Maine and Main Street via Milan (and a bit by way of Tokyo).
The irony, as one men’s editor pointed out after the show, is that preppiness served straight-up is what’s being fetishized these days outside the good old U.S. of A. Witness the success of Hilfiger’s own Prep World pop-up, which toured through Europe this summer. There’s a risk that if preppiness gets too sophisticated, something might get lost in translation.
Nevertheless, Hilfiger clearly wants to up his fashion ante, and in that respect, this collection had meat—and certainly gave everyone a little something to chew on.