Tommy Hilfiger, Zendaya Unveil Immersive Online VR Fashion Show

Tim P. Whitby/WireImage
Fashion designer Tommy Hilfiger has collaborated with Zendaya for a second collaborative collection to be presented on the runway on Sept 8.

A global audience can tune in for the shoppable VR runway show experience, streamed live from the Apollo Theater in Harlem on Sept. 8, where a bus parked curbside will sell the collection.

Since introducing his TommyNow experiential runway show with Gigi Hadid in fall 2016 in New York, Tommy Hilfiger has literally taken his show on the road to Los Angeles, London, Milan, Shanghai and, most recently, to Paris in March 2019. Now Hilfiger is finally bringing TommyNow back to New York City later this week, with the fall 2019 "see now, buy now" event at Harlem’s legendary Apollo Theater on Sunday Sept. 8.

This second Zendaya x Tommy collection, co-designed by Hilfiger with the pop star, the brand’s global womenswear brand ambassador, was unveiled last week in advance of the show. Its tailored, ‘70s-inspired pieces uphold Zendaya’s bold style infused with Hilfiger’s classic twist. Calling it a "full-circle moment," Hilfiger is looking forward to bringing the show to Harlem, a suggestion of Zendaya's, as the brand "continues to celebrate the diversity and inclusivity at the heart of our collaboration and brand DNA," he said in a press statement.

For those who can’t be in New York to witness the event firsthand, Hilfiger has created a virtual reality e-commerce experience. Doing away with the need for a headset, the brand is using a web-based VR technology that will be available by desktop or mobile at tommy.com. It will provide a global audience with unique, real-time access to the runway, backstage, front row and a pop-up shop at the TommyNow show at the Apollo on Sept. 8, starting at 5:30 p.m. PT.

Since shuttering its flagship store on Fifth Avenue earlier this year, Hilfiger is continuing to branch out with new ways to reach fans of the label. Before the show, those using the site will be able to visit the virtual pop-up merchandise shop, look at clothing hanging on backstage dressing racks, and shop styles worn by the models on the catwalk. Then during the show, cameras with 360-degree views will be placed on site at the Apollo Theater to broadcast live feeds of the red carpet, backstage and front row.

Cultural historian and Vintage Black Glamour author Nichelle Gainer has chosen content to decorate the tunnel inside the Apollo that will immerse TommyNow guests in a walk through Harlem’s iconic music eras as they enter the event.

For those in New York City, a Tommy x Zendaya bus will be parked outside the Apollo on the day of the show to take the experience to the streets of Harlem. Ahead of the show, the collection will be exclusively available from the bus for purchase. For a week after the show, the bus will travel to another as-yet-undisclosed spot in New York where fans can step inside the "TZH"-monogrammed vehicle, decorated with a snake-skin inspired pattern, to shop runway styles. 

As part of the special event, all sales proceeds of festival-inspired Tommy x Apollo x Zendaya T-shirts, designed exclusively for the event and sold at the TommyNow show, will be donated to the Apollo, of which Hilfiger is an official corporate sponsor. The same styles will be offered for sale on the Tommy x Zendaya experience bus, with all proceeds going to the Harlem-based performance training center Vy Higginsen’s Mama Foundation for the Arts, and musical talent from the foundation will perform at the fashion show.