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July 31 2014

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Tommy Hilfiger’s Prep House Touches Down In New York

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Muffy, we’re not in East Hampton anymore. Those planning a Meatpacking District shopping excursion this weekend can’t possibly miss the out-of-place beach cottage plonked Wizard of Oz-style across the way from the Gansevoort Hotel. The tornado responsible: Tommy Hilfiger, who is on a mission to spread the gospel of prep to every corner of the world this year. The designer told Style.com last night, “Prepsters aren’t too serious about fashion. They want to be casual about fashion, a bit rumpled, but still fun and put together. It’s more a state of mind, and I think that’s why it has become so widespread.” Hilfiger has pulled out all the stops with his prefab, 800-square-foot pop-up house, which will rove from city to city, bringing with it the new, 60-piece Tommy Hilfiger Prep World capsule collection. Also for sale are select vintage pieces including lace-up, striped sundresses for the girls and cool letterman sweaters for guys, as well as accoutrements like dog leashes and “Prepgammon” board games.

Hilfiger brought in friend and collaborator Lisa Birnbach, expert on all things preppy and author of True Prep: It’s a Whole New Old World, to consult on the shop’s decor. It’s fitted out with anything and everything you could imagine turning up in an Andover alum’s summer digs: a wall of a colorful decoy ducks, Adirondack chairs, croquet sets, and even a tennis racket chandelier. There’s also an iPhone app for shoppers, which can superimpose images of the clothing or of the ficitional “The Hilfigers” clan onto camera phone pictures. Jessica Szohr, Krysten Ritter, and John Legend (who engaged in a lively Ping-Pong match) were just a few of the guests who came out to kick off the Prep World tour last night with a preview party at the Standard hotel last night; after New York, the pop-up house will travel to L.A., London, Paris, Madrid, Milan, and Stockholm this summer. So much for traveling light—the house requires three tractor-trailers to transport and four days to set up for each location.

The Prep World pop-up house, located in Gansevoort Plaza, is open to the public today through Sunday (college students get a 15 percent discount), and the collection is also available in Tommy Hilfiger retail stores and online at www.tommy.com/prep.

Photo: Courtesy of Getty Images