Fashion designer Prabal Gurung is out with a new collection, this time collaborating with plus-size retailer Lane Bryant. Tailored for curvier women, Gurung’s collection attempts to change the dialogue in an industry “where fashion and beauty is always considered a size 2 or 0,” he said.
“I wanted to be part of this movement where women felt empowered no matter what size they are. Because I as a designer celebrate the essence of a woman rather than what her shape and size is,” Gurung said Friday on “CBS This Morning.”
Gurung, who launched his eponymous label in 2009 and has dressed the likes of first lady Michelle Obama and Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton, recounted a moment during a diversity panel when a woman asked, “What about plus size?”
“Oh, we’ll get to you,” someone responded.
“That kind of really bothered me,” Gurung recalled.
“My thing has been about inclusion. If I want to make any change, have a conversation of change, it needs to start with a conversation of inclusion,” he added.
Gurung said that includes 67 percent of American women in a market estimated to be worth $20 billion. With his new campaign, he tried to have an “elevated conversation” with Lane Bryant.
“So we chose the best photographer, Inez & Vinoodh, and we told the story through Vogue. Because that’s the high fashion. And I wanted to do that because I wanted this woman to know I see her, that she matters to me,” Gurung said.
The Prabal Gurung x Lane Bryant collection, which includes dresses, a jumpsuit and a leather jacket, is available in sizes 10 to 28 at prices ranging from $38 to $398.
Model Candice Huffine, who’s graced the cover of Vogue Italia and modeled Gurung’s 2017 fall/winter ready-to-wear line during February’s New York Fashion Week, is celebrating the endeavor. She said she used to be “shuttered away” on her computer while shopping for plus-size clothes, and knows changes are needed in the fashion industry.
“It’s changing their perception of what they’ve perceived a curvy woman or a plus-sized woman to look like or to even desire in past when it comes to fashion,” Huffine said on “CBS This Morning.” “So there’s a lot of misconceptions about her, therefore they didn’t really maybe know how to serve her.”
So what are some of the misconceptions? “That she’s not fashionable. She doesn’t care about having quality fashion. She’s not going to stay in this body forever so this is temporary, which means she doesn’t want to spend money on fashion,” Huffine said.
Now more than ever, Gurung said it’s time for the industry to get together.
“You can’t make things for women and exclude a huge group of them,” Huffine added.