Amidst clinking Champagne glasses backstage after his show last night — the last fashion show in Bryant Park before Fashion Week moves to Lincoln Center — Tommy Hilfiger described the evening as “bittersweet.” He added that his closing speech — for which he had to shush the crowd, who wouldn’t stop applauding as he strode down the runway with a microphone — was a matter of decorum. “I just thought it was appropriate, being the last show, to say something and give congratulations to Fern Mallis, IMG, and Stan Herman, who really made Bryant Park’s tents come to life,” he explained. “Fern Mallis opened the doors for me eighteen years ago, when I was not quite as organized as I am today, and I’m very grateful to her.”
A grinning Mallis was equally laudatory of Hilfiger: “This whole place was built to put American designers on the map, and Tommy is Mr. America. It was a fitting show, and a fitting scale of show. It wasn’t, you know, a little show in the Salon — it was a big, beautiful show, and everyone was there. It was a beautiful collection, too, which is even more important. Ending it that way and acknowledging us all, it was really poignant and lovely and it made me feel good.” Aw.