NYFW: Prabal Gurung Re-Imagines Marilyn Monroe’s ‘Last Sitting’ for Spring

prabal gurung spring 2014

In June of 1962, Vogue commissioned a photo shoot of Marilyn Monroe with photographer Bert Stern, just six weeks before her death. The images of the Hollywood icon may have been shot in the heat of summer, but they seems to embody spring in both color and feeling. Marilyn and her peroxide blonde coiff glowed against a rainbow array of pastels and it makes perfect sense that the photographs, as well as their star, could inspire an entire collection – especially at the hands of a visionary such as Prabal Gurung.

As we took in the show at Midtown’s Moynihan Station, we felt as if we’d been transported to Haute Couture week in Paris – or perhaps even Christian Dior’s atelier in the ’50s. But as they tend to be, Gurung’s modern construction techniques were unmistakeable, from the sparkling appliqué to the steamlined cut. The collection was in essence, a perfect marriage between mid-century elegance and the modern woman. The designer himself threaded the whole collection together with one turn of phrase: femininity with a bite.

For daywear, Gurung ventured into high-octane territory with a distinct athletic feel thanks to various satin takes on the bomber jacket paired with midi pencil skirts, as well as ladylike poplin dresses, futuristic skirtsuits, and even PVC raincoats. All of the former done in a high-energy palette of lilac, electric blue, mint, and scarlet set against black, white, and prints of the translucent floral persuasion.  But what really warranted the most ooh’s and ah’s, was the eveningwear, which proved that arresting formal doesn’t always have to sweep the floor.

We were most excited by the satin open-shoulder stunners that boasted subtly exposed corsets and impeccably placed beaded embroidery and feathers. The frontrunner, if fellow showgoers were any indicator, was the strapless black and pearlescent pink satin wiggle dress with Swarovski crystal embellishment. In terms of accessory, we were transfixed by ever pair of strappy Casadei stilettos that treaded the runway, as well as the heavy duty ear cuff and modern mod sunglasses accoutrements.

While there was a wealth of sartorial splendor, Charlotte Tilsbury had us on cloud nine for beauty. While cherry red lipstick was a Monroe signature, rouge was new age with matte fluorescent pink, citrus, and lavender. The statement lip was paired with one of our favorite new hair trends, the slicked-back wet look. View the collection, below:

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