Prabal Gurung brings the Himalayas back to NY

Monday, 08 September 2014
Nepalese fashion designer to the A-list Prabal Gurung on Saturday unveiled a Himalayan-themed 2015 Spring/Summer collection in New York paired with an inaugural shoe collection inspired by women artists.

Spectators who sweltered in the hot, cavernous Moynihan Station, were transported by a fast-paced, intense collection billed as "the juxtaposition of traditional Nepalese dressing and androgynous American sportswear."

It was the designer's second consecutive runway show inspired by a trek to Mustang, a plateau on the Chinese border where his mother's ancestors come from, and comes with him just weeks away from launching a new make-up brand. He chose white, turquoise, lilac, amethyst, navy and sunset coral as the colors of his collection, meant to embody the skies over Nepal from dusk to dawn.

Micro-shorts, skirts, asymmetrical dresses and organza blouses showcased Gurung's signature ruffles, hand embroidery, layers and different textures -- skirts draped with chiffon and dresses spliced with graphic details. Day dresses had three-dimensional rhododendron and carabineer prints. There was ample use to flocked satin, raw bleached denim, organza made into wrap blouses and then cloque jacquard, which looked a bit like subtle quilting and which Gurung said was a nod to the mountains.

Outfits encapsulated a fresh, dreamy exoticism trimmed with leather, ostrich features, ruffles and backs were cut out under and around the shoulders. For evening, Gurung created billowing, two-tone chiffon skirts with a stripe of color down the back and bodices encrusted Swarvoski crystals, finished with over-sized waistcoats to provide a modern flourish.

The designer's first shoe line complimented the clothes, each named after 20th century artists: Britain's Tracy Emin, Zaha Hadid and Cecily Brown; Americans Georgia O'Keeffe and Cindy Sherman, and Mexican painter Frida Kahlo. Stilettos had textural and color-blocked details with graphic straps and rhodium-plated hardware buckles and technical nylon belts.

The award-winning creator is a favorite of style queen Anna Wintour, the English editor-in-chief of Vogue and attended her son's recent society wedding. He grew up in Kathmandu and formed his eponymous label in 2009 after studying in India and New York. Gurung has dressed some of the world's most desirable women including Michelle Obama and the Duchess of Cambridge. "Mad Men" star January Jones wore Prabal Gurung to this year's Emmys.

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