Gurung, the New York designer from Nepal, is best known
for his bold color combinations and elegant silhouettes.
He dresses style influencers from Demi Moore to Michelle
sat down with him at Neapolitan boutique in Winnetka,
Ill., to talk about creating a luxury brand with soul,
his ideas on modern glamour and how he stays connected
to his homeland.
Tell me about your spring collection?
When I started working on my spring collection, the
intention was never to be political; it was actually a
completely different story. Then the 2015 Nepal
earthquake happened. I couldnít get those images out
of my head. At that point, Nepal, where Iím from,
became my inspiration.
just owed it to myself to highlight Nepal and bring it
to the forefront. For me, it was very much a cathartic
experience, to bring to light what was far more
important than just clothes. Thatís why I started my
spring show with 15 monks chanting a prayer of
gratitude. I also wanted to give a glimpse to the world
of where Iím from and why I am the way I am. So I made
a decision to base the collection on what I had seen and
how I grew up ó all the bold colors of saffron and
yellow. The Nepalese artist Laxman Shreshtha inspired
say the spring collection was the perfect blend of East
Who is the Prabal Gurung woman? Whom are you designing
She really enjoys being a woman and embraces all that
comes with it. She doesnít need to dress down in order
for her to be taken seriously. Sheís very assured and
How important is social media to you?
I remember when I started (using) Twitter, it was after
my first collection, fall 2009, and Demi Moore had worn
something, which she tweeted about.
friend told me about it, and my first tweet was thanking
her. Immediately afterward, I got 500 followers. Thatís
when I realized something big was happening. I just felt
like, Iím a new designer with not a massive amount of
money to invest into PR or marketing. So this was my
perfect opportunity, and I grabbed it.
use Twitter and Instagram, but for different reasons.
Twitter, for me, is for breaking news, and Instagram is
all about the visual.
Three pieces that a woman should have in her summer
Invest in the perfect summer dress, a special blouse and
a great knit.
the dress is long or short, you want something that
shows off your beautiful skin. Accessorize it with a
wedge and an amazing pair of earrings.
terms of blouses, most people wear T-shirts all the
time, so it should be flirty, feminine and fun, with a
lot of movement. Something that you can dress up or
dress down. Iíd pair it with some jeans and Grecian
your knit, you want a lightweight cashmere, perfect for
a cool summerís evenings. Pair it with linen pants or
shorts; there is something casually chic and sexy about
FEW OF PARABAL GARUNGíS FAVORITE THINGS
The new Saint Laurent black high tops ó I wear them
all the time.
city: New York ó there is nothing like it. It
challenges you, makes you question everything and
excites you. More than anything, it makes you feel
to get inspired: I think by being curious. My
collections have been based around ideas that have come
from my curiosity of art, music or books.
splurge: A Tesla. Iím really fascinated by it, and if
I were to buy a car, it would be that one. After Apple
products, it is one of the best inventions.
I love red because it requires such a confidence to wear
it, and I find it really sensual.
uniform: Black, white and navy. A white T-shirt and
jeans for every day because, while Iím working, I need
to be comfortable.
band ever: There are so many! My music taste ranges from
the Beatles to Stevie Nicks to Rihanna. But if I had to
pick, it would be the Rolling Stones.
to rebel: Just do your own thing, continue to do what
you want to do. I donít believe in rebelling; I
believe in quietly, assuredly, confidently walking your
path. I always follow my own rules.
reading: "A Little Life" by Hanya Yanagihara.
Itís about four friends living in New York.
that everyone should try once: Singing at a bar full of