The show bursts onto our screens with a marvellous red, white and blue catwalk that seems to have come straight out of Robert Stigwood’s ode to toxic masculinity, weekend rituals and tensions between different ethnic groups in late 1970’s Brooklyn – in other words, Saturday Night Fever. The models, one of whom is Canada’s gorgeously different daughter, Winnie Harlow, present cute horizontally-striped jumpers with fabulous gold platforms and tan stiletto boots. The music blends in effortlessly with the show’s surroundings, consisting of catchy instrumental pop with late seventies and early eighties disco beats. Tweed jackets receive the padded shoulders and cinched waist treatment, beautifully tailored with a touch of pleating at the bottom and a soupcon of glitter.
Sassy burgundy leather jackets are an alternative to the funked-up tweed that Hilfiger presents his audience with. Trousers are high-waisted and straight-legged in matching glossy tweed or white, dropping to the ground smoothly and skimming the silhouette – something that designers know work for very different physiques, whether you are leggy and svelte or have a heavier bottom half. The high-legged cut also gives the impression of length and height where it is lacking. In true jaunty Hilfiger style, sports meets sexy, with models sauntering to the disco tunes in slightly flared shorts, either tweed or plain white, paired with functional polo shirts in block colours or singlets with a heart-shaped neckline set off by wonderful boxy over-the-knee or knee-length tan stiletto boots. Bags are enormous clutches or loose leather tote bags. Flared dark denims and tweed trousers with gold or brown platform heels place us firmly in the decade some love to hate and others, like yours truly, adore. Swimsuits are playful striped hotpants and matching tops that can double up as daring disco wear. Hilfiger proposes denim suits for the vintage queen who opts for that relaxed office look. The pinstripe motif becomes the pattern that graces most of the middle part of the show – it adorns leather and denim jackets and flared trousers. Hair and make-up are glamorous and feminine, with dark or vermilion lips and long waved locks hair or afro styles. Satin jungle patterns bedeck straight-legged trouser suits, swimsuits and trench coats. Models with Farrah Fawcett (or Madonna, circa the “Hung Up”/ “Sorry” era) hairdos look as if they are more than ready to sip on a few Tom Collinses or Brandy Alexanders at a neighbourhood barbeque in their cute satin tie-knot shirts and denim flares. Beautiful maroon leather becomes, at a certain point, almost ubiquitous, extended to singlets, long skirts and tops as well as trousers and jackets, and gold is a firm favourite for accessories. Nightwear favours long-leg satin white jumpsuits, wraparound dresses in white, and three-quarter dresses, some slightly gathered at the top, almost in the Grecian style, others in sky-blue or enhanced by that seventies stalwart design, horizontal stripes in different shades of brown, from fawn to tan, caramel and warm reddish-brown, such as wood cherry, always set off by little touches of gold. The colour palette soon becomes more intriguing, with coral, teal and purple being added to the repertoire. Resplendent striped pieces later become some of the signature looks of the show, with delightful satin striped pleated skirts and the absolute diva piece par excellence – the asymmetrical, glossy satin striped evening gown flaunted all over the catwalk with great panache by its wearer in an Earth, Wind and Fire moment. Bikinis become cheeky wraparound styles teamed with hotpant bottoms. I have to say that this has probably been the most hugely enjoyable show I have recently had the pleasure to review – not only in terms of the sensitivity shown towards diversity, with unconventional models of all shapes, sizes, ages and skin tones, but also in the utter, unadulterated glee displayed by the models themselves, as well as members of the audience! I also squealed in delight as the divine Grace Jones, who has always been a style idol of mine, shimmied on to the catwalk, closing the show while dancing at the audience and smacking her buttocks in her own inimitable style. Boogie on, Mr. Hilfiger – your show’s been a blast!
- The seventies are back!
- Dark denim, whether in flared styles or tight, tapered trousers
- Long trousers, either flared or straight-legged
- Burgundy leather
- Platform heels or medium metallic stilettos for sandals
- Late seventies/ early eighties stiletto leather boots
- Stripes, stripes and more stripes! – both horizontal and vertical
- Earthy colours for spring – lots of browns – interspersed with dark bue, white, maroonLighter and brighter colours for the summer, such as sky-blue or azure, eal, coral and purple
- Gold accessories
- Glossy tweed
- Square shoulders and subtle shoulder pads
- Satin, especially with a jungle/ tropical print
- Tie-knot tops
- Polo influence
- Hotpants for bikini bottoms with tie-around tops