The classic hoodie is upgraded with plush cotton french terry and given a boxy oversized fit. Boxers are given a sleek tonal logo treatment with a recycled logo waistband. (Sustainable fashion is as much a touchstone of Preston’s work as his use of high-visibility orange.) Many of the pieces are marketed and styled as genderless. There are thermals, joggers, crewnecks, and utility pants, too—and no shortage of athletic-minimalist bras and underwear.
Even to the un-fashion-obsessed eye, this stuff looks a cut above the standard CK essentials you’d spy on shelves. The silhouettes feel tailored for the fashion-forward, and Preston’s use of texture and color elevates these basics to new heights. It echoes what Kanye West is doing at Gap, but also Kim Kardashian with Skims, or Jerry Lorenzo with Fear of God. (Fashion-tinted essentials for the Instagram generation, essentially.) Preston, alongside Abloh and Williams, has a heat-seeking eye for youth culture that is unmatched, and that is undoubtedly what Calvin Klein is tapping into here.
This isn’t a total swan dive back into full-fledged fashion, but proof that Calvin Klein knows we’re headed towards a future where apparel essentials will still require a jolt of high-grade style. (The brand also announced the hire of designer Willy Chavarria earlier this year, hinting at more sharp yet matter-of-fact American fashion.) The future of Calvin Klein may not have been Raf Simons-designed $2,000 overcoats. But it just it might be $178 hoodies, $36 thongs, and other high-quality streetwise essentials.