Can you BELIEVE it’s Christmas in just over a month? Where the hell is this year going!? This week has certainly seemed to whizz by in a high speed blur, albeit a rather fabulous one. No sooner had I recovered from the excitement of ‘meeting’ (read: spotting, stalking, snapping) Boris Johnson on Monday evening at The Hospital Club than it was time to slip into something significantly less comfortable and head to Harvey Nichols for an evening with New York fashion legend, Donna Karan.
I’m an absolute sucker for British department stores, especially at this time of year, and spent about half an hour loitering outside Harvey Nicks taking photos of their exquisitely illuminated Christmas windows on my iPhone. Finally I managed to tear myself away and head up to the 5th Floor Bar, arriving just in time to grab a glass of champagne (priorities) and spot Yasmin Le Bon, Izrina Lazareanu and Victoria Pendleton before being ushered to my seat so things could get started. The evening’s main event was a live interview between Paula Reed – Harvey Nichols’ Fashion Director and a personal career/life/wardrobe idol of mine – and the designer.
I was dying to hear about Donna’s incredible career from the woman herself, given that she last visited London over five years ago, it was unlikely I’d be getting that opportunity again anytime soon. I wasn’t entirely sure how to do this post, whether to try and regurgetate the whole thing or paraphrase it myself. In the end I’ve settled on sharing a few of my favourite quotes from the woman responsible for pioneering the capsule wardrobe. Enjoy!
On the female body: “I love the body. The body for me is the most celebrated piece of artwork.”
On resort collections: “Resort is always one of my fave seasons to design because I don’t have to do a fashion show. You just get to design what you like… Resort clothes are those objects of desire.”
On ‘the cold shoulder': “It’s the one place you’re guaranteed to never get fat… I love shoulders.”
On drapery: “It really allows you to wear what you want to wear.”
On long dresses: “Think about wearing them once and then cutting them short.”
On 21st century life: “We’re living in a very challenging world but there’s nothing wrong with a challenge, you can’t just do another collection, you have to work your butt off.”
On her philanthropic work: “All of us are going to be patients and all of us are going to be loved ones, I was. That’s how I realised what was wrong with the healthcare system and that I had to get involved.”
On keeping her energy up: “Bittersweet dark chocolate.”
On her career: “I don’t consider it work, I consider it living”.
Besides getting a rare peek inside the life and mind of a female fashion designer who’s revolutionised women’s wardrobe’s and become an industry institution, we were also treated to a mini catwalk show featuring the Donna Karan 2013 Resort collection. From immaculately cut pencil skirts and sleek blazers to blush pink confections and floorsweeping embellished red carpet dreams, Donna promised us “objects of desire” and boy, did she deliver.
love Ella. X