Equally dramatic and literary, quoth the designer’s Fall/Winter 2024 collection: “nevermore”

There are many mysteries to designer Thom Browne, but one thing is certain: he’s well-read. The American suit maker returned to The Shed in Hudson Yards—the same venue where he staged his The Little Prince-inspired collection last Valentine’s Day—for a collection based on Edgar Allen Poe’s 1845 poem, “The Raven.” As attendees settled in, The Shed was illuminated only by a giant backlit window pane, but when the show started, the house lights were dramatically switched on. This moment cued a lone model, dressed in a tweed puffer penguin coat and a top hat adorned with a raven-shaped veil, who walked through a crack in the window glass like a doorway. A mysterious 20-something-foot-tall tree at the center of Browne’s snowy installation was revealed to be a model on stilts in a giant puffer coat, as four children dressed in the designer’s signature light gray suit pop out from underneath the parka’s hem. The children settled in the snow beside the first model, dramatically hanging onto a makeshift swing attached to a (this time non-human) tree left barren from the fantasy winterscape.

But that was just setting the stage for the real show. The first look was a classic black Thom Browne suit, featuring a long pencil skirt rather than the usual tapered trouser, and a white boxy overcoat with intarsia ravens all over. Jackets and overcoats were patched with luxe black shearling or layered with trenchcoat straps; shrunken blazers and pleats skirt sets were combined and proportioned to give the illusion of an exaggerated Victorian silhouette; cummerbunds became waistline became belts on long, vented suit skirts. If the Gothic theme couldn’t get any more marvelously Thom, multicolored plaid blazers topped with a rubberized-looking treatment across the shoulders read “Nevermore,” and umbrellas topped with gold raven’s heads punctuated the inky feather headpieces and plastic-covered accessories. At the show’s climax, Alex Consani appeared in an ebullient gold cape, which she handed off to two the four children as if they were Cinderella’s helpful birds, revealing a stunning foil drop-waist bubble hem skirt and a matching gold bolero made entirely of metallic beads. As she made the final turn and the lights cut, we heard that word again: “Nevermore.” It felt like a positive omen for what’s to come.