Tuesday, January 29, 2013
Prabal Gurung Enlists Joan Smalls For New Campaign
stars in the new
spring/summer 2013 campaign - a model that the designer says "epitomises the Prabal Gurung woman in so many ways". Shot by by Daniel Jackson and styled by Tiina Laakkone, the images were designed to celebrate that commanding and captivating woman.
"I have known Joan for a while now and every time I am with her she continues to impress me. Aside from her obvious beauty, she is so sharp, witty and really just gets it," Gurung told us. "This season was about celebrating the woman we design for, that woman who has an innate ability to command attention, but in a subtle way - the woman who does not need fashion to garner attention, but rather uses it to enhance what is already there. Joan in so many ways epitomises this."
Of course, the designer is no stranger to having beautiful and high-profile women wearing his designs, counting the likes of Sarah Jessica Parker, the Duchess of Cambridge, Michelle Obama, Lady Gaga and Jennifer Lawrence among his fans.
"The Duchess of Cambridge wearing that dress was a huge moment for us. When asked [who I would most like to dress] she was always the one I would say I hoped one day would wear my designs, so to see that happen was undoubtedly one of the highlights since launch," he said. "I would hope that women who buy the brand feel even more beautiful, confident and empowered when wearing my designs. That is really what drives and motivates me to design and that will never change."
After spending two years at Cynthia Rowley and five years as design director at Bill Blass, the Singapore-born Gurung launched his first eponymous ready-to-wear collection for autumn/winter 2009-10. Despite the vast levels of success he's achieved since, the designer insists that he wants to take his time with growing the brand.
"I am not the kind of designer who is racing to the finish line so while collaborations are important for our growth, each and every one has to be strategic and well-timed with what we have going on internally. The recent
was incredible and it far surpassed all of my expectations," he explained. "I would tell any aspiring designer to take the time to experience everything they can to really get a feel for what direction they want to go in. And most importantly, let your passion and your gut lead you."
So can we expect a Prabal Gurung store to launch soon?
"This is definitely in our plans," he confirmed. "It's important however that we get to a point where we can offer more product categories and have that first storefront represent a full lifestyle brand. This all comes with time but I really am excited for that day."
As with any great levels of success come increasingly greater expectations - but it seems that Gurung is the master of taking that sense of responsibility and turning it into something covetable (the hint he gave us for his new season collection: "regimented".)
"There is undoubtedly a lot of pressure that comes with recognition, which can be a good thing and bad thing all at the same time," he said. "But if you stay focused and don't lose sight of what you're doing and who you are, you can rise above it."
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