NEW YORK — The Soulful Economy. It’s a movement Donna Karan is choosing to embrace wholeheartedly with her latest venture, the Urban Zen Holiday Marketplace. The pop-up shopping environment, which opened quietly this past weekend at the Urban Zen Center (i.e. the West Village’s Stephan Weiss Studio), aims to make a philanthropic difference with all kinds of artisanal pieces from around the world.
“I always feel it’s about the artisans,” Karan said during a walk-through of the space. “There are so many people who are really on this path right now so I said, ‘Why don’t we celebrate the whole concept of conscious consumerism, of buying something and giving back and making a difference in somebody’s life?’”
Karan assembled hundreds of objects, most of which are handmade, from jewelry and handbags to wooden dollhouses, furniture and rugs. Among the participants are English brand Elvis & Kresse, which recycles fire hoses for bags, while The Caliber Collection uses serial numbers from illegal guns and bullet casing metal for jewelry. Lemlem by Liya Kebede; The FEED Foundation, which was cofounded by Lauren Bush, and the Sheila Johnson Collection are also included in the mix. A portion of each vendor’s proceeds will go to the cause of their choice.
Karan said the “Soulful Economy” concept will only grow‚ and was quick to serve up one of her favorite Donna-isms: “I have always talked about dressing and addressing. It’s not only what you’re wearing on the outside but also on the inside. There is a soul there, an artisan hand. There is a conscious way of doing business.”
The marketplace will officially celebrate its opening tonight.
As for her favorite piece, the designer couldn’t decide. “Every time I walk in here, I buy,” she said. “I bought the jewelry, I really want to buy everything.”
The market is set to be open through Dec. 31, though Karan is already one step ahead. “I don’t think the Soulful Economy is just about the holiday season,” she said. “Hopefully I will be able to keep it up through fashion week. We want to open a little coffee bar here. That’s our next move: ‘Come here, buy a cup of coffee and a whole lot more.’”
Taking the final spot on the mens’ portion of New York Fashion Week calendar next month will be none other than @tomford. Though he’s shown his men’s wear in New York in the past, this will mark the first time the designer has shown his men’s collection alone during New York Fashion Week: Men’s. His runway show will debut on February 6 at the Park Avenue Armory. #wwdfashion
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Minnie Mouse celebrated her 90th birthday by getting her own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. For her celebratory luncheon, @coach’s creative director @stuartvevers dressed her in a custom made prairie dress, complete with Vever’s take on the polka dot – black sequined versions – under a cropped motorcycle jacket. The designer also put his own mark on Minnie’s classic red shoes, infusing the color with sparkles and adding some Coach crystals. “We chose colors that were very Minnie and also represented quintessential Coach elements,” said Vevers. #wwdfashion #nationalpolkadotday (📷: George Chinsee)
@nickjonas is unveiling his first-ever apparel collection through a partnership with John Varvatos. The limited-edition capsule, which makes its debut in spring, also marks the first time the designer has collaborated with anyone on a line. “The process in working with Nick is amazing. It’s inspiring to be around someone who is not only connected with the trade that they do, but also with what’s happening in the environment around him, and how that connects to what we do with style,” said Varvatos. (RG: @johnvarvatos) #wwdfashion
@margotrobbie steps out onto the red carpet wearing @miumiu. The actress is nominated for “Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role” in “I, Tonya” at the #SagAwards. (📷: Stewart Cook) #wwdfashion
For @massimogiorgetti of @msgm, the Nineties are his favorite decade. “They had a huge impact on my personal growth. What I like of the Nineties is that they are not so precise in terms of style as other decades…there was actually a bit of everything,” he said. As seen on MSGM’s Spring 2018 show: tie-dye and a bit of grunge, two styles that are synonymous with the decade #wwdfashion #wwddecades (📷: @kukukuba)