Fashion / Style

Hadid Models (Including the Underrated Brother) Give This Colorful Designer’s Fashion Week Show Even More Buzz: Getting Political Does Not Scare Prabal Gurung

BY // 09.21.18

NEW YORK — For some designers, everything is black and white. But Prabal Gurung was in a colorful mood at New York Fashion Week, with a spring/summer ’19 collection filled with bright shades and encompassing a world view. The American-Nepalese designer also offered a few runway surprises. Here’s what happened:

The atmosphere: Vibrant Buddhist prayer flags fluttered above the runway, reflecting Gurung’s heritage, and the runway program listed the ancestry of each model (Joan Smalls is Puerto Rican, Gigi and Bella Hadid are Palestinian-Dutch, Duckie Thot is Australian-Sudanese), noting the group represents 35 countries.

“Live in colour. Lead with your heart. Find peace in the journey,” Gurung explained.

Runway looks: Color, color, and more color. Gurung’s collection was one of the brightest of fashion week, with bold shades of green, yellow, blue, purple, pink, and red — sometimes all in one ensemble. The look is athletic, with oversize nylon windbreakers accented with techno drawstrings, low slung cargo pants, and racerback tank dresses with cutouts at the waist. And it has an international vibe, blending hand-embroidered detail from Nepalese artisans, hand-dipped cashmere knits, and such utilitarian fabrics as demin and jersey gussied up with ostrich feathers and hand-pleated chiffon.

Men included: For the first time, Gurung introduced menswear, which is every bit as colorful as his womenswear looks. Striped cotton crewneck sweaters, floral cargo pants and bomber jackets, sleeveless tunics, cashmere knit polo shirts, and hand-embroidered slacks have a casual, yet attention-getting ease for the fashion-conscious man.

Lots of Hadids: In addition to Gigi and Bella Hadid, brother Anwar Hadid walked the runway in a pink suit over a green ribbed tank. The 19-year-old model is not as famous as his sisters, but he’s getting there, particularly since he has been romantically linked with the Kardashian clan member, Kendall Jenner.

On the front row: Proud mom Yolanda Hadid looked on from a prime position, along with Crazy Rich Asians co-stars Awkwafina and Gemma Chan, Camilla Mendes, Kelly Rowland, Huma Abedin, and Tiffany Haddish. About a week later, Haddish appeared at the Emmys in a multicolor gown inspired by the flag of Eritrea, the African birthplace of her late father. Gurung custom designed it for her, but it could easily fit in with his runway collection as it has the same international vibe.

Get political: In recent seasons, Prabal Gurung has added a political bent to his collections. This time around, he subtly reminded guests to take part in the political process, with seat assignments emblazoned with the words, “I am a Voter.” He made his runway bow in a T-shirt with “Vote” in big letters.

In Houston, the Prabal Gurung womenswear collection is available at Elizabeth Anthony.

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