DIGGING FOR GOLD: The nonprofit Gold House, a hub of Asian cultural leaders in the U.S., is planning for its first Gold Rush, a 48-hour flash sale-type event that will start on Nov. 20.
Online shoppers will find apparel and goods from Prabal Gurung, 3.1 Phillip Lim, Asian American Girl Club. Iise, Nimble Made and other labels, as well as accessories and footwear from such brands as Capsule, SpiltMilk Eyewear and Wolf & Shepherd. Gurung will be selling his new tome from Abrams Books. There will also be an assortment of beauty and wellness options — Tatcha skin care, Blueland cleaning projects and Oura Health sleep tracker rings. There will be an assortment of exclusive and discounted goods. Timed to coincide with the solstices and equinoxes of each season, the Gold Rushes will be quarterly events.
Gurung, Lim, Public School’s Dao-Yi Chow, Allure’s editor in chief Michelle Lee and Em Cosmetics founder Michelle Phan are among the members of Gold Rush’s advisory council. Gurung said of his involvement, “For almost 10 years now, the thing that I have been talking about especially in fashion is the need for representation and demanding and asking for change. What I realized was when the decision-making table looks the same, asking for changes or hoping for changes is not going to happen. You have to be in the driver’s seat.”
In announcing the upcoming Gold Rush, Gold House’s chairman and cofounder Bing Chen cited a 2018 Harvard Business Review report that indicated that Asian Americans are the least likely racial group to be promoted to management in Silicon Valley. Overall, Asian Americans comprise 12 percent of the professional workforce and 5.6 percent of the U.S. population.
Inspired by the mission of Gold House, Gurung decided to get on board. “As a group of minorities from our diaspora, what happens is we are constantly an afterthought. I really felt like this is a place where we can really move the needle and create opportunities — not just a feel-good moment — but shift the culture and the economy. It was very much planned action and I thought it was time,” he said.
Gold House may be familiar to consumers for its #GoldOpen, an initiative that helped to sell out the opening weekend screenings of “Crazy Rich Asians,” “The Farewell,” and “Parasite,” among other films. Referring to the collective power that developed from that, Gurung said, “We made a real impact culturally by showing up.”
Gold Rush, meanwhile, was appealing in terms of exposure, actual sales and “reaching you to the Asian diaspora,” said Gurung, emphasizing the whole spectrum of people which includes those who are Chinese, Japanese, Indian and Nepalese, among other ethnicities.
Gold House also produces the A100 List, which salutes the most impactful Asians and Asian Americans & Pacific Islanders in culture. Vera Wang, Opening Ceremony founders Carol Lim and Humberto Leon, Stitch Fix’s Katrina Lake, Allure’s Lee, Lululemon’s chief product officer Sun Choe and Vanity Fair’s Radhika Jones are among those on this year’s list.