Coach Spring/Summer 2016 Menswear
Call it a fanny pack (U.S.), call it a bum bag (U.K.), or call it a hip pack (Coach show notes). Whatever your dialect, one thing’s for certain—only Batman has ever made belt-borne personal storage look unequivocally cool. This afternoon, though, Stuart Vevers grasped that nettle with gusto. “I just couldn’t resist it,” he said afterward. And if not now, when? For this was Coach’s first men’s runway show—a moment for Vevers to let rip his imagined brand architecture for this cleanish slate at the leather goods behemoth. Neatly, the designer encapsulated that as “Kennedy boys meet Beach Boys meet Beastie Boys.” And even though there were girls on that skate-park runway, too, wearing sized-down simulacra destined for sale at Opening Ceremony, you could see what he meant.
Coach men’s bold new unorthodoxy was most strongly expressed in the often fluoro, rarely faded abstract print (vaguely reminiscent of indigenous Australian art) that shouted on bowling shirts, macs, bags, and Vans-like sneakers. Big cat prints—tiger and leopard—in plum, navy, and gold seemed almost tame by comparison but gave good snarl when they popped from parka hoods. Those skate sneakers were arresting but were out-oomphed by a series of trippy-print pool slides (some strapped with shearling) that didn’t need Bryan Boy in the room to make you think “Bryan Boy.”
Beneath all this mashed-up kapow! lurked an undertow of concerted slouch. Haphazardly patched leather Harringtons and parkas had been worked hard to look so soft. The all-important bags—hip packs apart—tended to temper punchy color with unfussy functionality. This runway run-out offered a coherent, commercial, powerfully defined yet unpretentious vision of accessible millennial luxury. Although it couldn’t rehabilitate the fanny pack.