Harris and Hilfiger referred to the iconic two-piece yellow tracksuit that the singer wore in the late 1990s.
“It started on a boat in the middle of the Mediterranean,” said Jeremy O. Harris on Sunday afternoon the day before the Met Gala. The dynamic writer and producer – famous for “Slave Play” and “Zola” – was dating a friend who works closely with Tommy Hilfiger and was told that the designer was interested in getting him for the Met Gala dress.
Five days later, Harris was talking to Hilfiger, thinking about the brand’s archives. “I didn’t want to do an everyday look. I wanted to do something that tells a story about how I met Tommy as a kid and also tells a story about one of my favorite fashion icons, ”said Harris.
His Met Gala look pays homage to an iconic Aaliyah Outfit, a two-piece yellow Tommy Hilfiger tracksuit that the singer wore to one of her performances in 1997. Harris has been obsessed with the look since childhood.
“I was a huge Aaliyah fan growing up, as I believe a lot of people in our generation were,” he said. “I had a magazine photo of her in that yellow sailing bomber jacket that I looked at all the time, especially in the months after her death. I had this homage to her in my locker. It always struck me as the coolest Aaliyah look. ”
Rethinking and highlighting Hilfiger’s influence on black American culture in the late 90s was also very appealing to Harris. “You saw Snoop Dogg wearing Tommy; You’ve seen every great celebrity wear big plus size Tommy Hilfiger, ”Harris said. “And I knew that when we had the chance to look back at what Tommy was for the American fashion dictionary and what it could mean for me, I wanted to see through the lens of Tommy Hilfiger, how he understood black culture like black culture and Tommy Hilfiger had a symbiotic relationship. ”
Harris is looking forward to his appearance on the Met Gala stage to articulate how Hilfiger has built his brand around partying and working with black creatives. “Some of the first people to wear Tommy on live TV were rappers. And I think that made Tommy Hilfiger a very specific brand within the Black community – so much so that the awe the Black community for Tommy tried to cut it through. ”
(Circulated in the late 1990s an email claiming that Tommy Hilfiger had appeared on the Oprah Winfrey Show and said that he did not design for blacks – that was not true; the designer had never been on the show despite being a guest in 2007 appeared to set the record straight.) “None of the designers we see on this rug [at the Met Gala] could have made their way in this country without a black guy freaking out,” added Harris. “Tommy Hilfiger won’t become Tommy Hilfiger if [stylist] Kadida Jones doesn’t get a group of people like Tupac, Aaliyah, Mark Ronson and all the hottest, coolest kids to dance pop music in your clothes.”
Harris was about to track down a childhood photo of him and his sister, which was adorned in Tommy Hilfiger, in order to include it in one of his Instagram photo posts “Coronavirus Mixtape”, which marked his Met Gala look. “For a black boy who grew up in the ’90s, being able to wear a full Tommy look meant knowing you were going out with a steez that no one else could match,” he said. “Hopefully [the photo] won’t get lost in some Virginia dump.”
Montag delivered a new Tommy outfit to add to his archive of photos; His reaction when he first saw his last Met Gala look was an audible gasp.
“We’re transforming that jacket that I always looked at as a kid into this theater-opera coat. It’s this opening piece that fits a playwright who wrote a play that has now garnered all of these Tony nominations that is now writing TV shows, ”Harris said. “I can attend the Met Gala in a very different way than I did two years ago when that shy kid who was very scared of going after Hailey Bieber. I am very happy to go there in my strength, fully in my being. ”
And while Harris’ outfit will certainly attract a lot of attention, he – like many others – is eagerly awaiting what Rihanna will be wearing . “I think that’s what I’m looking forward to the most. I love her so much, ”he said.
September is a busy month – and it’s monumental for Harris too: In addition to attending the Met Gala, he’s also attending the Tony Awards ceremony at his “Slave Play” has already made history as the most nominated play of all time.
“If you want to be underchallenged, this is what a Tony Award nomination looks like,” said Harris, pulling the nomination notice in a leather folder from his desk his home office. “It’s amazing, but in my mind as a little kid, I thought it was going to be so great and so big,” he said. “It’s just a little something I could have gotten from high school or something.”
Harris brings his mother to the awards ceremony as a date and promises another fashion statement on the horizon. “We’re going to wear looks that will really rock people. I think I’m looking forward to the look as much as I am looking forward to the ceremony. ”
The 32-year-old creative has more big moments ahead of him. Harris is working on several projects this fall; he’s writing The New World, a film for Warner Brothers, and another film for a “really great actor that everyone loves.” He’s also working on two plays for Broadway and, together with the poet Aziza Barnes, is working on the adaptation of the series of the bestseller “The Vanishing Half”.
“After these one and a half years of waiting and this break that we have taken, it feels It’s really great to just get together with people in any of our little ways, “said Harris. “Because all of these events were about that. There’s the glamor, there’s the fun, but as someone who works in the theater, community is important to me. I’m interested in community building and community building and these small micro-communities of like-minded people who have had similar experiences. [Opportunities] for these people to come together and feel free from the mania of everything are so rare. ”
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