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What Tommy Hilfiger wants, Tommy Hilfiger gets, whether it's Karl Lagerfeld's ready-to-wear and accessories lines, or a giant, brand-new Fifth Avenue flagship store. The former his company purchased in 2004. The latter was being finished up last weekend so it could stock a good opening party with celebs in town for fashion week.
The 22,000-square-foot palace comprises five full floors of Tommy Hilfiger accessorized with bits and pieces of Americana, like vintage license plates from all 50 states. The store also has its own strange message of financial ascension: Everything gets more expensive as you go up. You enter on the ground floor with men's "downtown," and can descend a flight of stairs to visit the basement-dwelling denim line, or you can ascend a white spiral staircase to the men's "uptown" line, where you can even acquire custom-made suits as a store exclusive.
The third floor is women's "downtown," where you can find preppy separates and a couple reasonably sporty pieces, with some vintage pieces included just to mix things up a bit. We actually really liked an Amelia Earhart-esque leather bomber jacket that was worn by a mannequin in a kicky little skirt and aviators. (Are aviators back again? We hope so, because we still have the ones we picked up in 2004.)
The fourth and final floor is women's "uptown," where the runway collection is housed and the chairs are upholstered in black sequins. There's also a secret treasure on that floor: By the elevators there is a framed "Souper" dress, a Warhol-inspired paper dress produced in 1968 as a promotional item that could be purchased for $1 and two Campbell's soup labels. So what say you, will you visit?
· Hilfiger Mega-Flagship Arrives on Fifth Ave. [WWD]
· It's Tommy Time on Fifth Avenue [The Shophound]