GloRilla Is Tommy Jeans' Newest Face
Photography by Myles Loftin / Styling by Mel Renée / Hair by Kadiatou Tall / Makeup by Anscherely Noel / Story by Jade GomezMar 28, 2023
At the forefront of counter-culture, you could always find Tommy Hilfiger’s recognizable red, white and blue draped over the bodies of everyone from Britney Spears to Aaliyah. It has become a calling card in American style, positioning itself as a quintessential brand without the garishness of its more patriotic counterparts. Throughout the ’80s and ’90s, every major cultural figure could be seen sporting the brand’s windbreakers and jeans, but it was the hip-hop co-signs that catapulted the design into the stratosphere. With a seed planted by New York’s own Grand Puba when he famously rapped “Girbauds hanging baggy/ Tommy Hilfiger top gear” on Mary J. Blige’s hit “What’s The 411?” Tommy Hilfiger found themselves in the middle of a bustling hip-hop scene, dressing everyone from Raekwon to Snoop Dogg.
It’s only right that in 2023, another generation is ready to love and appreciate Tommy Hilfiger’s legacy, fueled by the inescapable draw of nostalgia that has seeped into fashion trends, music sampling and more. As we once again look to the young tastemakers for the pulse of fashion and culture, it’s fitting that Memphis rapper GloRilla steps forward as the face of Tommy Jeans’ newest collaboration with luxury streetwear brand Aries. Founded by Sofia Prantera, Aries has become a London fashion mainstay, edging its way into global consciousness through a variety of collaborations. Known for their eye-catching graphics that go against the modern conventions of repetition found in much of modern streetwear, the genderless brand transcends textiles, inspired by ‘90s skate culture, Prantera’s Saint Martin’s background and her natural instincts to create bold, timeless and recognizable pieces, much like Tommy Hilfiger throughout their rich history.
“I’m a big Aaliyah fan, and I love what she did with them,” GloRilla explains as she steps into this new role as the face of Tommy x Aries. “I’m part of keeping a legacy going.”
That rich legacy is threaded throughout the collection, reappropriating the iconic Tommy Hilfiger logo in the now-classic Aries fashion. Oversized t-shirts, baggy two-tone jeans, mesh and printed elastic test the boundaries of the Tommy Hilfiger logo alongside Aries’ simple, commanding and thought-provoking design. Welcome pops of neon green are scattered throughout the collection, providing a youthful disruption to the status quo.
GloRilla found herself at the center of a revitalized interest in Memphis crunk music with her viral 2022 hit "F.N.F. (Let’s Go)." Since then, she’s worked with everyone from Cardi B to fellow Memphis torchbearer Duke Deuce. Her instantly recognizable deep voice and biting lyricism echoes the rich hip-hop history of her hometown which, much like the genderless appeal of Tommy Hilfiger and Aries, was the launching pad of legendary names such as Gangsta Boo, La Chat, Princess Loko and more, all of whom existed within a male-dominated industry with their own unique styles, refusing to compromise for mainstream appeal.
“I feel highly favored, because it could have been anyone else but me,” GloRilla admits as she reflects back on the process. “I gotta make sure I keep it going. Memphis is getting the notoriety it deserves.”
The campaign is accompanied by an instrumental version of GloRilla’s “Unh Unh,” featuring verses by U.K. grime artist Novelist as well as Aries family Kirbs and 5EB. The exciting, high energy remix speaks to the collection’s sustainable counterpart, Tommy x Aries: Remade. Derived from post-consumer waste and surplus materials, these one-of-a-kind pieces breathe another life within the collection, which is already inspired by the individual components of each garment, and old meets new.
As GloRilla succinctly explains, “It’s refreshing to me, because I love the old-school and being able to bring it to my generation.”
The collection will be available starting on March 31, 2023, at select Tommy Jeans stores and on tommy.com.
This article is a sponsored collaboration between Tommy Jeans and PAPER
Photo assistant: Andrew Espinal
Digitech: Nik Antonio
Styling assistant: Zakkai Jones
Tailor: Lindsay Amir
Creative services: Eric Vidmar
Creative production: Will Foster
Project manager: Elise Sullivan
Production coordinator: Chelsea Wooten