But he also believes in the power of colour. “I grew up in a place where women in their full feminine glory, in colour and texture, was kind of unnerving for men,” the Nepal-raised designer said backstage before his Autumn/Winter 2018 runway show. His moodboard was covered in photographs of China's matriarchal Mosuo tribe, where the women don colourful, richly fabricated garments. India’s Gulabi Gang, female activists in pink saris railing against domestic abuse and other violence against women, were also represented.
The resulting collection relied heavily on wrapping and bundling, which gave the clothes plenty of depth and shape. Some pieces were a bit too weighty; most notably the sequinned looks and the feather-tipped sweater dresses. But overall, his quilted wrap skirts, oversized knits and flyaway slips in berry shades were exuberantly true to Gurung’s brand. The most gorgeous technique featured strips of featherweight organza woven into a textile resembling the carpets in the homes of the Mosuo women. As colour returns to the red carpet, Gurung will be there not only with options, but an inspiring message, too.