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‘Looking to the next generation’ — Coach SS23 is coming for Gen Z

He’s a multi-platinum artist, singer and songwriter, and today Lil Nas X added model to his CV, as he hit the Coach runway on day four of New York Fashion Week wearing a head-to-toe leather look from the brand’s spring 2023 collection. 

“It was such a fun experience being part of the Coach show and walking on my first runway ever,” said Lil Nas X, the new global face of the brand.

Coach SS23

Since he took the helm in 2013, British designer Stuart Vevers has worked tirelessly to make heritage American label Coach a youth-centric brand. And today, as Cali rapper Doja Cat took her seat front row alongside TikTok major Abby Roberts and YouTube sensation Amelia Dimoldenberg (of Chicken Shop Date notoriety), it was clear: Coach is here to dress Gen Z. 

Coach SS23

“Youth has always been something I’m really inspired by,” said Vevers backstage post-show. “Since we returned to the runway last spring I felt it was so important to look to the future. And to me that means looking to the next generation.”

Coach SS23

Certainly the clothes themselves were particularly targeted to the under 40s: gingham puff sleeve babydoll mini dresses worn with Mary Janes and white ankle socks, bashed up high-top sneakers and Varsity jackets all had a high school feel while the brand’s mega popular Tabby bag came reworked in a longer messenger style that had space for your homework. Jelly shoes and matching glittery PVC wristlet bags meanwhile were long summer holiday ready.

“The idea was very much the beach but it had to be a New York version of it, so I thought where do New York kids go: Rockaway beach, Jones beach, Coney Island… or the piers,” said Vevers, whose set at the Park Avenue Armory was thus a dream-like interpretation of a New York City pier.

Coach SS23

The collection went long on leather — “summer leather,” stressed Vevers — with oversized leather driving jackets recurring alongside leather shirts, shorts and playsuits, often layered one atop the other. Some of the bags and coats were made from repurposed leather jackets, leather from footballs, and leather donated as part of the brand’s “Reloved” programme, which lets customers return old handbags to be repurposed or customised. It’s all done by artisans in NYC, and it’s growing so fast they’re currently hiring, says Vevers.

Coach SS23? Lots of leather and coming to a TikTok near you.

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