Models sleep on Thom Browne beds during the Milan show

Fashion designer Thom Browne presents his collaboration with Italian textile brand Fret as part of a sleep-themed performance during Milan Design Week 2024.

Brown'Time to Sleep' took place on Tuesday 16 April inside the neoclassical Palacina Appiani in Milan's Parco Sempione.

A row of beds arranged inside a neoclassical palazzo
Thom Browne's Time to Sleep was performed at Milan's neoclassical Palazzina Appiani.

The upper-level salon of the 19th-century Napoleonic building provided the setting for the show, surrounding six identical couches made of fine cotton satin sheets by the American designer. Soon Collection.

„Brown has identified Palacina Appiani, an abstract representative of Neoclassicism, as an unlikely place for a nap,” the artist's statement said. „An immediate dialogue emerges between the generous proportions of the hall of honor and six simple mid-century beds.”

Six identical beds are lined up inside a decorative stationSix identical beds are lined up inside a decorative station
Six identical beds were lined up inside the building's ornate top-floor saloon

Beds were lined up in a very ornate but empty room, until a bell rang and six models in underwear entered one by one and took their places beside their respective beds.

Another bell signaled them to start donning their gray Thom Browne uniforms, before two more models adjusted their ties and straightened their shirts.

A model in a brown suit walks between the bedsA model in a brown suit walks between the beds
Before the show, models dressed in Thom Browne suits alternated between mid-century couches.

Once properly dressed, the six sat on their beds, put the custom-made eye masks on their heads, and then lay down to sleep.

The soundtrack includes music about sleep, including Once Upon a Dream from Sleeping Beauty and Johannes Brahms' Wizenlied (Lullaby).

Six underwear-clad models stood next to their respective bedsSix underwear-clad models stood next to their respective beds
Six underwear-clad models walked in one by one and stood next to their respective beds

„The performance brings the collaboration to life and serves as a continuation of Thom's interest in the intersection of art, fashion design and storytelling,” reads the artist's statement.

Brown's partner collection with 160-year-old brand Fret includes duvet and sheet sets and towels, all embroidered with the brand's recognizable four-bar logo.

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Gray wool-cashmere blankets, throws, and cushions feature the same trademark stripes, while a light gray, yarn-dyed cotton velor bathrobe is based on the silhouette of a Thom Brown trench coat.

Gym towels and a soft terry cotton beach bag in white are also available.

Models dressed in Thom Browne uniforms Models dressed in Thom Browne uniforms
At the sound of the bell, the models began to dress in their brown uniforms.

Brown launched her eponymous brand in 2001, and Time to Sleep marked her first event at Milan's annual design week.

It follows the company's long tradition of exhibitions at architecturally significant venues including London's V&A Museum and New York's Cooper Hewitt, MoMA and Met Museums.

Close-up of Thom Browne's bed collaboration with FredClose-up of Thom Browne's bed collaboration with Fred
The performance marked the debut of Thom Browne's collaboration with Italian textile brand Fret, which includes bedding, clothing and accessories.

„Brown's past works include performance art and handmade sculptures; architecture and proportion are often an important element in his fashion practice,” the statement said.

The designer also hosted a „teddy dog” for his toy-inspired Fall Winter 2022 collection in New York, while mid-century offices made a reference to his first store in San Francisco by ASA Studio Albanese.

Photo courtesy of Thom Browne.

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