Coach AW22 is a celebration of all-American romance
Shown in New York on Valentine's Day, Stuart Vevers' latest collection is sweet like apple pie.
Image courtesy of Coach
When you choose to show on Valentine’s Day, a hefty dollop of romance comes with the territory. Not one to shy away from that duty was Stuart Vevers of Coach, who last night presented his AW22 collection for the American leather goods stalwart on Pier 36 of New York City’s Lower East Side. Rather than broach the theme too literally — the line between sweet and cloying is, after all, a fine one — the British creative director forewent carpeting the runway with rose petals in favour of a more subtle, tinted perspective.
Where that made itself most strongly felt, was in the show’s setting — a reproduction of “a town somewhere in America,” read the show notes, “where it’s always the golden hour”, conjuring images of pristinely Stranger Things suburbia to mind — as well as by the fact that long-distance attendees were delivered all-American apple pies before the show.
Though the clothes that filed down the runway didn’t directly echo the cinematic romance that coloured the context in which they were shown, they were nonetheless imbued with an endearing yesteryear appeal – almost like timeless hand-me-downs that look even more chic generations now than the day they were first bought. Pieces like the opening boxy shearling coats — worn with wide-cut mauve and lime cords — and an upcycled chocolate leather macintosh exuded strong 70s nostalgia, while leather vest-and-trouser separates brought a racy, Mapplethorpe-y edge to Stuart’s study of the range of the material’s potential.
Elsewhere, there were looks that reeked of 90s grunge: subtly oversize tees bearing graffiti-ish graphics won with chunky dog-collar chokers, Peter-Pan-collar dresses, hefty wrap skirts, and leather coats printed with acid-hued houndstooth tartan motifs.
Rather than mawkish or regressive, however, they felt inflected with a contemporary, cool-girl spirit — an iconoclastic confidence that saw pieces often burdened by historical associations take on new significance for a new generation. As other cultural parallels prove — Doja Cat’s recent cover of Hole’s late-90s pop-punk anthem Celebrity Skin most recently — it’s also an approach that’s bang-on-trend. As much as Stuart Vevers may have romantically looked back on American fashion history when designing the collection, it’s among today’s archive-savvy audience of Gen Z shoppers that the collection will most strongly resonate today.
And special shout out to the FROW, starring brand ambassador Megan Thee Stallion, Euphoria’s Fez AKA Angus Cloud, and Rina Sawayama. “It was my first show for NY fashion week this year,” Rina told us after the show. “I loved the collection — so many beautiful pieces and the casting was wonderful too.”