Brand known and recognized around the world, Tommy Hilfiger can also be seen as the most beautiful incarnation of the American dream. Its creator Thomas Jacob Hilfiger never misses an opportunity to recall his career and all the steps that have guided him to success. But is this one deserved? What is the quality of the clothes on offer today? We give you our full opinion in this article.
The history of the brand
Like its most iconic competitors (Ralph Lauren, Calvin Klein, Fred Perry, etc.), the Tommy Hilfiger brand bears the name of its creator. Finally, to be precise, it is at Thomas Jacob Hilfiger we owe this American brand, presented today as a label “celebrating the essence of American cool style, with a touch of preppy revisited”.
Raised among the 9 children of his Irish Catholic family, Tommy Hilfiger took off at the age of 18. First in a store in her hometown, Elmira, then, a few years later, in her own store, The People’s Place. He then specializes in the personalization of clothes that he unearths himself on the New York side.
It was finally in 1985 that he switched to design and decided to found his own label. (after having refused a position of assistant designer with a certain Calvin Klein). Ambitious and a bit megalomaniac, the designer wants to address the intellectual elite of the American East Coast by revitalizing the preppy wardrobe, playing the chic-casual card to the full.
Its first flagship piece is a polo shirt with a tricolor logo on the chest and Tommy Hilfiger is putting the small dishes in the big ones to make it known to as many people as possible. Thus, a giant billboard in Times Square claims that the 4 great American designers are R____ L_____, P____ E____, C_____ K____ and T____ H_______. New Yorkers quickly understand who the top three are (Ralph Lauren, Perry Ellis and Calvin Klein), but the last one remains a mystery. The advertising poster simply shows the address of the new Hilfiger store and the name of the creator is not long unknown. On the contrary, this arrogance pleases Americans and contributes to the dazzling success of the brand.
In 1995, Tommy received the Designer of the Year award from the CFDA (Council of Fashion Designers of America), the first trophy in a long series, which allowed him to make a name for himself internationally.
Over time, the Hilfiger collections have continued to grow, targeting men as well as women and children. And alongside the casual chic wardrobe, the brand has acquired a good reputation in the denim market but also in perfumery, regularly collaborating with prestigious muses (Beyonce, Rafael Nadal, Lenny Kravitz, Lewis Hamilton…).
“Everyone had their own style. Me, I’m cooler than Ralph, less sexy than Calvin but more affordable than Perry ”
Thomas Jacob Hilfiger
Our opinion on Tommy Hilfiger
In addition to the “great designers mentioned” above, we would tend to compare Tommy Hilfiger to Gap. A little less well, perhaps … Because if the basics are generally very successful, some pieces are more questionable. And above all, the value for money is not always up to expectations (especially on some jeans).
However, lovers of preppy and / or casual style will find what they are looking for with the brand’s chinos and polo shirts. Special mention also to the shorts for the summer!
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The best clothes of the brand
The polo shirt is THE iconic piece of Tommy Hilfiger, the one that allowed him to make a name for himself on the American and then international fashion scene. And since it’s also the preppy symbol par excellence, you can go for it with your eyes closed! However, rather than a too classic model, do not hesitate to think outside the box: Hilfiger has the good taste to offer original polo shirts of good quality!
For the rest of the outfit, rather than denim, we advise you to take a look at chinos and Bermuda shorts.
Where to buy Tommy Hilfiger clothes?
If his adventure started well in New York, Tommy Hilfiger never wanted to stop at the East Coast of the United States. Today, the designer claims his presence on 5 continents, with more than 1,400 stores open in 90 countries. In France, there are 39 stores in 2021.
The collections can also be found on all the main e-commerce sites (Zalando, Amazon, Galeries Lafayette, etc.) and, of course, on the brand’s e-shop.