NEW YORK, United States — "Thank god," said Donna Karan of the fashion industry's shift toward showing instantly shoppable merchandise on the runway. The designer, who has been calling for this sort of change for years, presented her Urban Zen collection at New York Fashion Week for the first time in the brand's history, right in her Tribeca store and events space. Of course, everything was immediately available to purchase, but this debut was clearly more about Karan putting weight behind Urban Zen, her main focus since exiting DKNY and her now defunct namesake label in 2015. (Previous owner LVMH subsequently sold the company to G-III earlier this year.)
You can see Karan's masterful design skills in the wrapped leather vests, curly cashmere sweaters and twist-front jersey jumpsuits. That's why it wouldn't be surprising if retailers missing Karan's work are compelled to pick Urban Zen up for the first time. But the collection feels like a redux. Karan certainly has something more to say, and plenty of admirers who would love to hear it.