Ever the flag-waving patriot, Tommy Hilfiger is feeling particularly proud to be an American this spring. Maybe it’s the election year. “We wanted to own and celebrate red, white and blue,” he said backstage before his show. “We always do, but lately we haven’t put it on the runway.” Consider it done. In addition to reviving his classic color scheme, Hilfiger wanted to brush up two of his original motifs — nautical and safari, which he featured in his original 1985 collection. Staged on the High Line, prime positioning to capitalize on the waterfront breeze of the Hudson, the lineup held up to his word.
Sailing motifs, ahoy! Many were shipshape, as in the beachy trapeze maxidresses with rope straps and Breton striped trompe l’oeil shirts; others ran aground — the head-to-toe striped suits were a tad too earnest. As a whole, the look gained momentum as the show went on, with successes coming in wide-leg patchwork twill trousers, dress versions of preppy varsity sweaters and a light linen shirtdress with leather details. The most interesting use of red, white and blue was slick leather dresses done in a mix of stripes. Yet for all the emphasis on the patriotic palette, there were a great deal of washed-out sandy tones, too. They looked crisp and clean, though not obviously safari-esque, on cable knits and summery leathers.