Alongside the designers that dominated fashion in 2023 are the ones we are deeming the “talk of the town,” brands that were on the lips of every fashion insider and garnering an extraordinary level of excitement. We are already predicting they are primed to be even bigger in 2024. Perhaps the buzziest to speak of is the Toryssance, as everyone in fashion is discussing how Tory Burch has risen to a new height of cool. “There’s something uniquely special about a brand reinventing itself without needing a new creative director at the helm to shake it up,” explains Who What Wear editor Eliza Huber. “Too often, that’s the answer to diminishing support in the fashion world—replacement.” Huber is referencing how Tory Burch stepped away from her role as CEO when her former LVMH executive husband Pierre-Yves Roussel took the reins in 2019 so she could run the creative side and focus on clothes.
The result has been nothing short of brilliant. The clothes and accessories are excellent. The team has hired top-notch creatives, including stylist Brian Molloy, who also styles runway collections for The Row. The brand was nominated for a CFDA award for Womenswear Designer of the Year in 2023 for the first time since it was launched in 2004. “The pierced toe-ring sandals and mules made such a splash that they eventually made Lyst’s Q3 2023 hot list,” notes Huber. The editor-favorite shoes are in the wardrobes of at least two Who What Wear editors and are so popular that they have sold out practically everywhere. According to Lauren Sherman at Puck, searches for Tory Burch are up 48% over the past six months. The hype among the fashion community also translates to real numbers and sales.
Ferragamo is another brand that has dominated conversations among fashion insiders. With the appointment of Creative Director Maximilian Davis in 2022, the first collections of the brand were hotly anticipated. While modernizing the brand with many of the ready-to-wear silhouettes, Davis was smart to dig into the archives for inspiration behind many of the most in-demand pieces. The Wanda bag—a boxy bag finished in metal buckles that was originally introduced in 1988—anchored the S/S 23 debut collection for Davis in new colorways, including an airbrushed gradient orange. The Hug bag that launched on the F/W 23 runway, too, taps into the iconic silhouettes and handcrafted artistry of the brand while offering up a fresh design and is already one of the most talked-about pieces in the Who What Wear offices.
Phoebe Philo’s long-awaited return also made a mark on fashion in 2023. After exiting Celine in 2017, the designer announced a luxury brand with LVMH under her name in 2021. Philophiles have been waiting for years for the arrival of the new vision of her eponymous brand, which arrived on October 30 of this year to a near sell-out. “Phoebe Philo, Phoebe Philo, and even more Phoebe Philo. Based on my requests since the launch this past week, everything from their accessories (the Peak Sunglasses!) to their handbags and their ready-to-wear will all be in very high demand,” Waller tells Who What Wear. “With their direct-to-consumer model, clients will need to continue to be quick to snap up their favorite pieces. It will continue to sell out.” Despite high prices and a drop model that has created product scarcity, fashion insiders are quick to agree that this is only the beginning for the newly launched brand.