Oh Hello Jo — Foo & Foo with Elizabeth Hilfiger

Jo Rosenthal
Rebekah Campbell

Many people visit New York during fashion week to immerse themselves in the ‘scene.’ But what happens when you are the ‘scene?’ Los Angeles-based brand Foo and Foo brought their charm to New York this past September and what happened was not only a gap bridged between fashion and art but the cultivation of all things cool and exciting in lower Manhattan. 

Designing clothes comes naturally for Elizabeth Hilfiger, daughter of iconic Tommy, who paved the way for American fashion for the past 37 years. Elizabeth grew up surrounded by art and design, so when she decided to start her own brand, it only made sense that it would be a hit among everyone fabulous. Foo and Foo is known for their iconic oversized t-shirts, comfy sweats, and accessories that are sure to make you stand out; it’s hard not to find a piece you’ll love. 
The first-ever Foo and Foo runway show took place at Master Kitchen Supplies on the Bowery on a sunny afternoon and brought quite the crowd. Master Kitchen Supplies is usually filled with chefs and service industry people looking for things like the best ladle or perfect mixing bowl, but they weren’t the only crowd there that day. For kitchen supply lovers and fashionistas, people everywhere flocked to get a good look at the runway that took up the store’s entirety. Rows of long seats filled the space, along with photographers, celebrities, and longtime fans of Elizabeth and the brand.
When she’s not in New York, a typical day for Hilfiger consists of running with her dogs, getting to work early, emails upon emails, making sure her team is aligned, and doing a million things at once to make time for Drag Race later in the evening (if she’s not seeing a friend for dinner). For someone who is always having a good time, Hilfigers runway show just added to that excitement. She says it’s always fun seeing her team come together, especially this time for her first show. In 2022, it was everyone’s desire to be Bi-Coastal, and Foo and Foo is making that happen, one design at a time. 
Hilfiger knew she wanted to start a brand in college because that’s when she could focus on creativity and design. It was really all she could think about. So when she officially launched her brand in 2017, things made more sense. People always ask the meaning behind the name Hilfiger chose, and the answer might not surprise you. It was her childhood nickname, inspired by a little bunny that every child adores. It’s personal and an extension of herself: a little rebellious, quite mischievous, and creative. Foo AND Foo invite everyone to be a part of the community, especially those who can relate. For artists looking to make their brand stand out, making things as personal as possible is a great way to do so. Being immersed in the Foo and Foo universe involves dogs, laughing, existential dread, cleaning up after boys, more dogs, uber, and B-side pop music, among the designs themselves. 
As for her favorite and least favorite things about having a brand? Sewing and patterning have been a rewarding process to take on, but when products come back from production wrong or damaged, it can be pretty frustrating. She really doesn’t like lateness but has come to adapt to any difficult situation that might get in the way of her brand fully succeeding. Hilfiger stresses the importance of taking things day by day. She loves being able to create every idea that comes to mind, but some of her ideas are weird, so she’s always figuring out how to adapt. 
The future of Foo and Foo is bright, and that light isn’t growing any dimmer. Hilfiger hopes to continue making utilitarian clothes that stay in style. She says it’s fun to have crazy pieces in her closet. Every aspect of the show was a thrilling process. Hilfiger and her friends loved casting unknown faces, crushes, and anyone fun and inspiring. Rather than casting anyone “cool,” she wanted to cast people who felt real. Hilfiger says after the success of this show, she wants to continue to showcase her brand in this capacity. The first show was challenging, with a lot of learning lessons, but because there will be many more, she will be ready.