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Donna Karan: An emotional 30th anniversary / Fall 2014

A model walks the runway at the Donna

A model walks the runway at the Donna Karan New York 30th Anniversary fashion show during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week on Feb. 10, 2014, in New York City. Credit: Getty Images / Neilson Barnard

Inspiration: A mesmerizing film by Steven Sebring played on a giant screen backing Donna Karan’s runway on Wall Street depicting abstract dancerly bodies. In her notes, Karan said, “I needed to express a woman’s soul and spirit from the inside out.” But, it’s fair to say that Karan used her own iconic pieces as inspiration – these celebrated and updated – all beginning with the bodysuit.

The vibe: A show that people eagerly attended, among others Hugh Jackman and Katie Holmes, Karan’s long runway was powerful, energetic and dramatic, depicting she-devils and earth angels – sometimes all in one look. Sexy without a hint of crass, sophisticated and dream-like. Virtually every piece had an electric undercurrent – a wow factor – and Karan’s most distinctive signature.

Lust-o-meter: It was Karan’s greatest hits gone greater… sometimes even Avant Garde, such as the case of the enormous ivory longhaired shearling coat and cowl paired with a jersey bodysuit. One flowy black pant was slit to there, sexy boots went to the thigh and sturdy oversized jackets were paired with ethereal fly away skirts that featured sparkling gold embellishment, crystals and hand-punched holes. Drop-dead gorgeous evening looks interrupted the mostly gray and black parade – ruby, gold, plum in rich velvets and chiffon swirled around bodies as if they were live. There was not a miss in the lineup.

Our take: What a privilege to view this incredible body of work. When Karan took her runway walk there were tears in her eyes and ours, too. In an industry where longevity and relevance are a rarity, Karan has more than held her own.

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