the american dream
Gigi Hadid launched her TommyXGigi capsule collection in Friday’s Tommy Hilfiger show, which kicked off the designer’s new see-now-buy-now format.
The deep-fried aroma oozing from 'Tommy's Best French Fries' stall on Pier 16 in New York instantly transported you to the American fun fairs we all grew up with, IRL or across the pond in film and TV. Hilfiger's show on Friday evening was his first of the see-now-buy-now kind, and the second following Tom Ford in a season that's set to change the fashion system. It was good, ole' capitalism, the unapologetic American way, and it didn't stop at the Ferris wheel and arcade games that framed the show. At 'Gigi's' stall, guests were invited to have a go at boxing bags, a kick-ass tribute to models' model Gigi Hadid, who cemented that status as she launched her TommyXGigi capsule collection as part of the show, her peer supers clad in varsity jackets with her name on it. (Then you kind of know you've made it.) Gigi's parents Yolanda and Mohammed Hadid of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills were front row, as was reality queen Kris Jenner, and the American Dream couldn't have wished for better representation.
Here was the working-class boy from Elmira, New York who grew up to become a fashion mogul, erecting a life-sized funfair on a famous city pier in part honour of a heiress-turned-model, who got her break as the daughter of a reality TV star with great connections. The best thing about America is that here, there's absolutely nothing wrong with that. The American Dream is a recurring theme in the current presidential election, which - predictably - has become the darkest and most preposterous ever. Trump Tower hovers over New York like a monument to the American Dream, and a reminder of the egotism it can create. Fabulous as it was, Hilfiger's funfair had a sinister undertone to it caused by that forced sense of fun a fair like that represents, and in the grander American scheme of things it served as a reminder that all is not fun in the Land of the Free this season. When guests at New York Fashion Week turn on their TVs in their hotel rooms, Donald Trump (born in New York) and Hillary Clinton (former New York senator) are waging war on each other for the key to the White House on November 8th, biased TV networks are taking sides and digging an even deeper cleft between liberalism and hard conservatism in a nation where Hilfiger's American Dream becomes less attainable by the day.
But it didn't put a damper on the designer's big runway-to-wardrobe debut. A capsule collection like TommyXGigi, fronted by the model of the moment, was made for see-now-buy-now and an Instagram generation that wants a piece of the cake while it's hot. Like the Tommy Hilfiger mainline collection shown before Gigi's, her capsule was the stuff preppy American dreams are made of: a bubble-gum take on Ivy League sportswear with all the plastic fantastic 80s high school magic dust American TV shows have scattered around the world. It was a look we could all relate to and one that never dies, because the American Dream lives in all of us. And as far as fashion's see-now-buy-now evolution goes, the final inauguration of fast fashion kind of had to happen in America where consumerism is a virtue—and putting 'fast' before any word makes it taste a lot better.
Text Anders Christian Madsen
Photography Mitchell Sams