Singapore Designers Tour Prabal Gurung’s Showroom With CFDA

Posted by filterpart on Jul 31, 2015 in blanket

On Thursday morning, as part of the Council of Fashion Designers of America’s Fashion Futures program — launched in partnership with Singapore Fashion Week in May — three Singapore-based designers touched down at Prabal Gurung’s atelier in the heart of New YorkCity’s Garment District for a chat and tour. The experience was just a small part of the jam-packed, three-day immersive fashion program aimed at nurturing rising fashion talent in the Southeast Asia country.

The itinerary, organized by the CFDA and Mercury Marketing and Communications, will introduce the three established designers — Chelsea Scott-Blackhall of Dzojchen, Sabrina Goh of Elohim, and Priscilla Ong of Ong Shunmugam — to the American fashion industry via designer showroom visits (to Carolina Herrera’s, Diane von Furstenberg’s and Thakoon Panichgul’s, in addition to Gurung’s) and meetings with fashion public relations firms and retailers such as Kirna Zabête and Fivestory. As part of the trip, the trio will also tour the CFDA Fashion Incubator and visit a New York manufacturing operation under the CFDA’s Fashion Manufacturing Initiative.

Priscilla Shunmugam, Prabal Gurung, Sabrina Goh and Chelsea Scott-Blackhall.

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Blackhall and Ong have run their respective women’s contemporary sportswear brands locally in Singapore for five years; Goh has had her brand for six. Gurung,who is in the midst of designing his spring 2016 collection, spoke to the women about the importance of following one’s instincts. “I launched this collection in 2009, deep in the recession,” said the designer, who was born in Singapore but grew up in Nepal. “A lot of people told me, ‘Don’t do it.’ But I’ve always believed this: the biggest thing you need to do is to gain experience but also to truly understand your instincts. They will guide you if you’re attuned to yourself and the things that are happening around you. I felt it was the right time in spite of everyone telling me not to do it.”

After one of his looks landed on the cover of WWD, Gurung started to receive calls from retailers, and he credits actresses Zoe Saldana and Demi Moore for helping to propel the brand into the spotlight. “Demi [Moore] started tweeting about my brand, and I joined Twitter to say ‘thank you’ to her,” Gurung said. “I had never tweeted, and I was really not into it. But I immediately got 500 followers when she responded back to me. This was about five or six years back, when the majority of the fashion industry was not open to social media….The minute that happened, I was like, ‘OK, there’s something here. [Social media] is an easy, free tool for p.r. and press.’ So I started doing it more. You have to listen to your instincts. And I’m not trying to say I did social media before anyone else — but I felt it was right for me. It’s really important to be true to yourself.”

Gurung, citing his work with Nepal earthquake relief, also stressed the responsibility designers have to use their platform to raise awareness for bigger issues. “What I’ve realized is that I have a platform and I’ve created an audience,” he said. “And I felt that it was important for me to do something and turn the attention that was coming to me onto [issues] that were bigger and more important…Being able to channel that attention and energy into something else besides my passion has given [fashion design] newfound meaning for me. I suggest to not get distracted and truly follow your passion, but to also remember that if you have an audience of even one person, then there’s a responsibility for you to talk about things other than yourself and your clothes. I’m motivated by that.”

Another important piece of advice: Know yourself. Gurung pressed the designers to ask themselves a series of questions: “Why is there a need for this collection? What is it that I’m saying? And then look at your competition: What price point do you want to be at? Who are your competitors? What are they doing? I think it’s important to study the market. It seems easier than it is; it is extremely challenging and extremely demanding. Think about things like: Where do I belong? Where do I want to belong? Who is the woman that I want to design for?… I’m very aware of my customer base and fully embrace it. You have to accept it. It’s better to understand who you really are.”

Ong asked Gurung if he had any thoughts about representing the Asian community in the fashion world. “I’m proud that I’m able to represent the American fashion industry,” Gurung said, “because I wasn’t born here. They talk about the American dream; I left my family back in Nepal, had never come to America, came here knowing no one, went to school and built this brand. I feel it’s only possible in America to do this. This is the country that gave me the opportunity. All the Asian designers – from Jason [Wu], Alex[ander] [Wang], Joseph [Altuzarra], Thakoon [Panichgul], Richie [Chai] and Phillip [Lim] — we’re all friends. We text each other. We have these crazy group texts going on….It is my heritage and I’m extremely proud of it.”

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It explains the plot of the performance in Forest Park, a free tradition suitable for all ages

Posted by dthsth on Jun 3, 2015 in blanket

Hundreds of celebrants braved a muggy night and a torrential downpour to acknowledge the recipients of the Peabody Awards, an eclectic bunch that ran the gamut from documentarian Alex Gibney to NBC News correspondent Richard Engel to “Serial” podcaster Sarah Koenig to comedians Amy Schumer and John Oliver.The “Serial” award struck one of the most intriguing notes of the evening, as it is the first podcast to win a Peabody. Koenig, the force behind the series, told the crowd assembled at Cipriani Wall Street in Manhattan that much of the program was recorded in nap blanket her basement, with blankets used to muffle unwanted sounds.NPR, PBS and CNN were among the bigger winners of the night, though the event took on a different tone as host Fred Armisen moved from talking about real news programming to satire and parody. Tina Fey took the stage to present a Peabody — and a big mouth-kiss — to Amy Schumer, noting “Amy’s honesty is making everyone furious” as it is displayed in the Comedy Central program “Inside Amy Schumer.”

Oliver came to the stage last, after CBS anchor Charlie Rose read a brief but stirring introduction explaining how Oliver was as much a journalist as any other person in the room – even though he used humor to help make daunting topics such as net neutrality intriguing to a broader crowd. “I didn’t hear what Charlie Rose said,” Oliver told the crowd. “I can only assume it was” an expletive that is typically used to mean ‘false.’Other highlights of the presentation included Gibney noting “I feel good” in accepting his award for the HBO air conditioned blanket James Brown docu “Mr. Dynamite: The Rise of James Brown” and one of the producers of Cartoon Network’s “Adventure Time” offering to draw sketches of Peabody attendees.The 74th annual Peabody ceremony marked the first time the event was given a night-time awards show treatment complete with red carpet. Highlights of the three-hour ceremony will air June 21 on cabler Pivot.With the Memorial Day weekend and the last day of school in sight, warming St. Louis weather means the season of swimming pools and patio dining is fast approaching.

And the St. Louis Post-Dispatch features department has created a timely cavalcade of outstanding coverage to help readers make their plans for the summer.On Friday, Go! Magazine featured its summer concert preview with more than 160 concerts compiled by pop music critic Kevin C. Johnson. It is essential reading for local music fans.In the Sunday paper, the cover of the A&E section is devoted to the Post-Dispatch’s annual cartoon on Shakespeare Festival St. Louis’ summer production. It explains the plot of the performance in Forest Park, a free tradition suitable for all ages.For 14 years, cartoon blankets Post-Dispatch theater critic Judith Newmark and freelance artist John Telford of Buzzmachine Studios have teamed up to produce a cartoon about the Shakespeare Festival play. The guide is a quick, entertaining summary of the story to help newcomers follow the plot.This year the festival presents “Antony and Cleopatra.” While those names are well known, their tragic drama isn’t as widely performed as, say, “Hamlet” or “Macbeth.”“Antony and Cleopatra were big celebrities,’’ said Newmark, the Post-Dispatch theater critic since 1995 and Post-Dispatch journalist since 1972. “They were the Brad and Angelina of their day.”

This summer’s production is a tragic romance between the two most powerful people of their time, the Queen of Egypt and a Roman warrior.“Their love affair changed the course of history,” Newmark said. Because this play is performed infrequently, she encourages people to attend this summer for a rare treat.Her love of Shakespeare, which she studied at Bryn Mawr College in Pennsylvania, enables her to distill a complex plot with many actors into an accessible format.Newmark, a founding member of the St. Louis Theater Circle, also wrote a Sunday profile of Mike Donahue, a St. Louis native who directs this summer’s production. Donahue works throughout the country, but this summer’s show marks his first production in his hometown as the director.“air conditioned blanket Antony and Cleopatra” opens on Friday, with preview performances on Wednesday and Thursday. The show runs through June 14. Theatergoers can bring blankets and lawn chairs as well picnic food for the evening shows amid the trees of Forest Park.If you go, be sure to look for the Post-Dispatch cartoon, which will be featured on a 12-by-8-foot wall on the festival grounds. You’ll see visitors gathered around it brushing up on the plot before the play’s start and at intermission.

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