“We don’t call it resort,” says Stuart Vevers in Coach’s sunny Hudson Yards office. “We call it winter.” If anything can make customers excited for the return of the Polar Vortex, it’s this Coach collection, which gives gothy mall looks some heritage details. (That it was served on a July day with a side of super-high humidity in New York City also helped make the case for the cold).
Vevers’s approach at Coach of late has been to reassess the past with a magpie lens, culling his favorite Bonnie Cashin references with Etsy styling tips and TikTok trends. It’s a diplomatic, engrossing design philosophy that operates more on instinct than analytics—which is probably why Vevers’s clothing is resonating with a younger audience that craves authenticity. You can tell he’s been checking out the For You Page, merging Gen Z Y2K obsessions with The Craft to create devilishly twee velvet minidresses and sporty, clunky Mary-Jane flats with rubber soles. Worn by street-cast models, some of whom appeared in the brand’s fall 2022 show, the clothes look realistic. Even the C monogram, at times a little full-on, is overdyed and washed in black denim to complement dark tonal varsity jackets and shearlings. Cashin coats are black, leather boardshorts are black, and chokers with dangling dino charms are sometimes black too, lending a broody mien to these sweet clothes. “It should feel a little worn-in,” Vevers said, “but joyful.” Come snowy days and chilly temps, these happy knit minis and peppy plaid skirts will be hard to resist.