New York Powerhouses: Thom Browne

This Powerhouse is changing the shape of fashion’s future

Attending a Thom Browne presentation—or marveling at the brand’s masterfully tailored separates—is akin to witnessing a masterwork of theatre. Despite Browne’s embrace of American references, the creative has reserved his spectacles for Paris Fashion Week, where he has been a marquee name since 2014—until now. For Browne, showing in New York for Spring/Summer 2022 felt natural, partly because his partner Andrew Bolton’s exhibition “In America: A Lexicon of Fashion”opened at The Met this past fall. “It was important for me to support Andrew’s exhibition” Browne tells V. “There’s so much talent in New York and it felt significant to celebrate alongside those designers.”

Anh wears all clothing and accessories Thom Browne

Though Browne moved stateside for this season only, the move served as an ode to American fashion and marked a revival of the brand’s runway presentations, which had been on pause since 2019. Toying with new silhouettes—tulle dresses and floral capes—Browne hinted at a post-gender future for American fashion. Scheduled toward the end of New York Fashion Week, Browne’s surrealist storytelling culminated in experimental mastery and tantalizing attire. The sprawling garden, or runway, teemed with horse-headed bicyclists donning his signature suiting. “The collection was in three parts,” Browne explains. “Tailored, shaped, and trompe-l’oeil representing Greek and Roman sculptures.”

With many questioning the relevance of traditional runway formats in a post-pandemic industry, Browne offered a powerful rebuttal: one that highlighted his design know-how while also hinting at a blossoming multi-disciplinary approach to American fashion.

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