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Tom Ford Fall 2024 Ready-to-Wear: Vanilla Sex

Peter Hawkings' second women's runway collection didn't dare enough.

Tom Ford Fall 2024 Ready-to-Wear Collection at Milan Fashion Week GIOVANNI GIANNONI/WWD


Backstage ahead of the Tom Ford fall 2024 ready-to-wear runway show, creative director Peter Hawkings was as eager to chat eyewear and how each acetate was chosen, and beauty as reflected in the collection’s palette and suggestion of being enveloped in “vanilla sex,” as he was clothes.


Which is to say that rather than shying away from the fact that the Estée Lauder-owned brand is an intensely commercial proposition, with ready-to-wear the supporting player (which let’s face it, is the case at most luxury brands), Hawkings was embracing it.


“Everything is working as a world, and that’s the luxury of being at this company,” he said of the holistic approach, describing the collection almost like a makeup palette — strong military-inspired outerwear in navy and black echoed in gloss on the eyelids, progressing to softer nudes like shades of the brand’s Slim Lip Color Shine on suiting, slinky cutout jersey gowns, and glittering fishnet fringe dresses; back to shiny black and gray leather looks, bustier catsuit included, to bold lilac and ultraviolet velvet, to a black finish flashing lots of sequins and skin.


There’s something to be said for connecting the beauty and fashion categories more closely, if it were done in a more clever way. Hawkings tried to set the mood with Champagne, a spotlit runway, rumbling seats, a noirish “Basic Instinct” soundtrack and Sharon Stone herself sitting front row. But all that didn’t create much heat.


Instead, the clothing just felt vaguely Tom Ford, though even Tom Ford’s Tom Ford was not as well defined as his Gucci and Saint Laurent. The accessories also need more development to be desirable.

If Tom Ford the brand is all about seduction, and certainly his fragrances and beauty would suggest that it is with evocative names like Rose Prick and Lost Cherry, we need to feel something when we see these clothes, we need to feel who and what seduction is now.


Hawkings does have some distinctive tailoring. Three-piece suits for women (which came in several iterations) with strong shoulders, nipped blazers, waistcoats unbuttoned over cleavage, and flared pants or short shorts were luxury looks to aspire to and showed quality in their details. But overall, he didn’t dare enough. Too vanilla, not enough sex.








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