Tribal Times at Donna Karan
by Amanda Weiner
Zulu engraved wedge ankle-wrap sandals, Donna Karan ($1,190). 819 Madison Ave., 212-861-1001
“I’m constantly inspired by my passions, artistically and personally,” says Donna Karan of her Spring collection, which marries a global perspective with a strong visual statement. “After a year of traveling to Haiti, my two worlds came together: translating the vibrancy of tribal elements into sophisticated, sexy urban clothes. Everything is a work of art.”
Karan was motivated by her experience as a volunteer in Haiti following the January 2010 earthquake. Unifying this commitment with her dedication to fashion- forward New Yorkers was the ultimate challenge. But the first look during Donna Karan’s Spring/Summer fashion show reveals the designer has brilliantly captured the nation’s aesthetic. A color palette inspired by Haitian artist Philippe Dodard and organic embellishments derived from the environment met Karan’s signature understanding of the cosmopolitan woman’s wardrobe.
Such attention to detail and specialized handiwork translates from her ready-to-wear to the accessories. To wit, her Zulu engraved wedges recall the totem poles and traditional masks of Haiti.
photography by brian klutch zulu
Cover shoot: May/June 2014 issue of Gotham magazine.