Tuesday night at new Houston boutique Atrium — adjacent to owner Luvi Wheelock’s bridal couture shop Casa de Novia — Prabal Gurung met with Houston’s perkiest fashionistas. And while I didn’t get a blowout or wear my Louboutins for the event, I still got two questions in with the Singapore-born, Nepalese-raised designer. In a raised atrium with the late evening spring sun shining down onto his Fall 2011 collection — cocktail dresses, blouses and gowns in cream, black, hot pink and deliciously overly saturated lava and crimson (including the dress at left), I pulled Prabal away from his cooing flock, and he graciously sat down for a quick chat:
FSML: You’ve become a real, leading figure in the American fashion industry and in terms of American style — sort of a darling for the CFDA and Vogue — but how does your very international background continue to inspire you?
PG: Subconsciously, it’s always there. From living in Singapore, Nepal, London, India and everywhere. And I hope the “darling” part is always because of my work? (he got pretty sheepish here, raising his eyebrows)
FSML: Of course! That’s what I meant. Okay, today I was playing around on your website and saw the video in which you talk about how your inspirations always change when it comes to mood, colors, maybe a picture you’ve seen, but that you always design for “your girl.” Who is she?
PG: I always say that she’s a thinking man’s sexy woman, and what I mean by that is that she loves fashion but also loves other issues. She’s smart, aware, excited about getting dressed but is more of the world than just clothes. She knows the issues.
I’d promised Prabal just two questions so that he could back to his clients, so the interview ended there. Thanks to the lovely Priscilla (with me and Prabal at right) for the pictures!
Photo Source: CultureMap.com
Last fall, I posted the good news that Houston bridal boutique Casa de Novia planned to open a couture boutique next door, called Atrium. As excited as I was to attend the store opening next Tuesday just to see the new merchandise and visit again with the spectacularly sweet Luvi Wheelock, I’m looking forward to it even more, now that I know Prabal Gurung will also be at the event. One of the most elite of the new Vogue and CFDA darlings, Gurung has dressed Michelle Obama, is a master draper, and looks pretty good in a v-neck undershirt, too. My camera is still broken, but I promise to find a way to post pics.
Damn, I’m already beaming like a fool.
When you go: The grand opening party is next Tuesday, April 19, from 6pm-9pm; 3331 D’Amico, Houston, TX; Phone: 713.599.1271.
Christian Cota; Photo Source: AskMen.com
This is a few days late, but still deserves reporting:
The 2010 CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund nominees were announced late last week, and come November, one promising designer will receive a $200,000 prize and a year of official mentoring to help build their business. The nominees are: (copied from the CFDA website)
ALTUZARRA – Joseph Altuzarra
BILLY REID – Billy Reid
CHRISTIAN COTA – Christian Cota
EDDIE BORGO – Eddie Borgo
GREGORY PARKINSON – Gregory Parkinson
LODEN DAGER – Oliver Helden and Paul Marlow
MOSS LIPOW – Moss Lipow
PAMELA LOVE JEWELRY – Pamela Love
PRABAL GURUNG – Prabal Gurung
ROBERT GELLER – Robert Geller
Each designer must interview with the selection committee and participate in a design project sponsored by Ann Taylor, and the winner will be announced on November 15. Congrats, and good luck!
** Also take a look back at last year’s winner.
Jason Wu; Photo Source: nymag.com
Tonight in New York are the CFDA Awards, and up for Womenswear are Prabal Gurung, Jason Wu and Joseph Altuzarra for Altuzarra. Menswear nominees are Michael Bastian, Tom Ford, and Marcus Wainwright and David Neville for Rag & Bone.
Picture roundup tomorrow!
Photo Source: BryanBoy.com
Back in October, I pointed you all to an article in the New York Times about the CFDA’s incubator contest for emerging designers. New talent vied for discounted studio space in a 10,000-square foot building in the Garment District in a project that is also being supported by the City of New York.
And yesterday, Fashionista directed me to the list of winning designers who now have a warm, dry place to make pretty clothes. Each designer gets about 800-1,000-square feet each, and will only pay $1,500-$2,000 a month in studio rent, as opposed to the nearly $3,000 a month rate that City Room estimated last fall.
If you take a look at the list, you’ll notice that there are a lot of designers who’ve already received measurable success and press: Sophie Theallet, Alice Ritter and former Bill Blass design director Prabal Gurung, among them. It’s been barely a year since Gurung struck out on his own, but he’s already got shout-outs from Demi Moore and Oprah. Oh, and 800+ square feet to play in.