At Master Kitchen Supplies on Delancey Street, a model strolled past shelves of bowls and spatulas in low-rise denim – the belt of her boxers sticking out from the top. It was Tommy Hilfiger, but the “Tommy” was covered in tape that said “Elizabeth,” heralding a new Hilfiger on the fashion week stage.
Enter Elizabeth Hilfiger at the runway debut for her cheeky label Foo and Foo, which has been growing slowly since its founding in 2018. The brand presented a full-fledged collection of its vision of American basics on Tuesday – offering tactile and cool clothes with built-in features.
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The effort is part of her overall goal of serving “wearables for cool kids,” she said backstage.
Part punk outdoor adventurer and part vintage Americana, the collection was a crack at becoming a lifestyle brand. Hilfiger, who launched Foo and Foo with a range of screen-printed T-shirts, now wants to be known for clothing that offers a broader purpose.
She was inspired by the days when her Los Angeles studio lost air conditioning amid a heat wave this summer. Climate change, she thought, is something we have to get used to – and clothes can be part of that equation.
Many items were lined with fabric sourced from Techniche, a workwear company that develops cooling textiles for people at risk of heat exposure. The jackets come with removable back patches that when soaked in water can keep a person cool for up to four hours. What looked like a shoulder bag to the naked eye was actually an ice pack holder that can stay chilled for up to 12 hours – a great accessory for anyone who’s been stuck waiting in one. miserably hot New York City subway stations this week.
They were styled with perfectly baggy pairs of jeans, navy thermal t-shirts deliberately faded to look like they’d been washed for 20 years, and low-cut skirts with brightly colored elastic drawstrings.
“I don’t follow trends but I am inspired by preppiness [I grew up around]. I just do what’s utilitarian and fun and playful,” she said.
The Hilfiger brand is currently on offer in a few select boutiques across Japan, but she hopes her debut show will help her spread the word as she looks to growth.
Launch the gallery: Foo and Foo RTW Spring 2023