September 11, 2007
The ceiling of massed lightbulbs was reflected in a polished white floor that cried out for a Fred and Ginger routine. The blast of big-band music with which Tommy Hilfiger's presentation opened promised the very same. But prior scrutiny of the accompanying show notes would have informed guests that what Hilfiger had in mind wasn't Astaire, but a hybrid of a fifties American ad man and an English schoolboy. In other words, Thom Browne's challenging proposition has indeed made its presence felt in the corridors of fashion power. Cropped, fitted jackets and cropped, cuffed pants exposing several inches of sockless ankle had Thom's stampand it was driven home by the weighty wingtips. Still, Hilfiger tempered the radical Browne effect with his own patrician red, white, and blue, not to mention the shade of baby pink that is only sported by the kind of man who quaffs dirty martinis with Muffy and Buffy at the yacht club. That same guy would feel right at home in a marina-ready pinstriped navy jacket paired with white pants (after he'd had the sleeves and legs extended a little). And he'd maybe even fall for the seahorse-embroidered slacks, again in baby pink. Hilfiger's vision of a leisured WASP life also extended to a pajama suit in peach, while at other moments, the model appeared to have dragged his strictly tailored jacket over his bed attire.