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Donna Karan

Can it really have been 30 years since Donna Karan launched the eponymous label that would go on to redefine urban luxury? As the famed fashion designer celebrates three successful decades, we’re more than a little in awe. She’s truly had quite the run.


Two of Karan’s sharp, utili-chic looks for fall 2014.


We’ve tallied up the highlights from yesterday’s shows—from the boldly patterned catwalks of DKNY and Diane von Furstenberg to Opening Ceremony’s star-studded theatrical dramedy at the Met.


Celebrating New York City’s “color, culture and creativity,” DKNY underscored the Big Apple’s global-melting-pot status with vivid colors, graphic geometric patterns and kaleidoscopic prints—all atop voluminous silhouettes.


Last Thursday, more than 550 fashion lovers from all over the country converged in a cavernous cruise-ship terminal on the outskirts of Seattle to join us in celebrating our 28th annual Designer Preview.

Nordstrom friends like Vogue Market Editor Cynthia Smith, Seattle Art Museum president Jaennae’ Dinius, rising musician Hollis and our Director of Creative Projects Olivia Kim—among countless other notables—mingled during an evening complete with a cocktail reception, an incredible runway show and shopping fall ’14 collections. Read more to see some of our favorite highlights from this stylish soiree.


Angela is business on the top and flirty lady below! This particular genre mix is a mega trend here in Paris. I have spotted a number of flowing, airy skirts paired with tailored tops and jackets.

Angela’s look is full of contrast, both in color and texture. And, who doesn’t love a sexy set of lace-up stilettos? In fact, this is a perfectly balanced outfit for the capricious Parisian climate!


Shop similar styles:
Femme & Flirty Skirts | Lace-up Sandals | Turtleneck Sweaters

Shop our Editors’ Picks to re-create this look:

Donna Karan Midi Skirt | MIA Limited Edition Sandal | Theory ‘Ristan’ Sweater

February 12, 2014

Runway Rundown: Donna Karan

Donna Karan Fall 2014No one does New York style quite like Donna Karan, who celebrated her 30th anniversary collection this week with a jaw-dropping runway show, highlighting her greatest hits and favorite pieces. This included everything from perfectly tailored jackets to sexy sheer dresses. The monochromatic styling and dramatic headpieces helped push the show over the top, making it one of the major highlights of Fashion Week.

Donna Karan Fall 2014Donna Karan Fall 2014Donna Karan Fall 2014

See all of our Fashion Week coverage.
Mary O’Regan

The Glamourai’s Kelly Framel models the Infinity Dress for the second installment of her insider look at Donna Karan.

I will always invest in items that can truly be worn in multiple ways, and this dress fits that description better than anything I’ve ever seen. Just as the four classic elements encompass all aspects of existence, so this dress can be worn anywhere and any way you can imagine. While the possibilities are truly limitless, I chose to style it in the four ways I felt best represented the elements of Earth, Water, Air and Fire.


FIRE is the energy and nobility of the cosmos, the element of creativity and inspiration, of passion and transformation. It is a dress no longer encumbered by neckline, instead worn in strapless simplicity, wrapping thrice around the body in the quintessence of red-hot heat.

WATER runs deep; it is the element of emotion, intuition and love. It is romantic, sweetheart sleeves spilling smoothly over the shoulders, as effortless and serene as a softly sparkling sea.

Visit to read the entire article.

Timeless. Versatile. How do you wear your Donna Karan Matte Jersey Infinity Dress?

Shot on location in Montauk, New York, by photographer James Katsipis in collaboration with Donna Karan New York and Nordstrom.

Jeffrey Kalinsky, our resident designer authority, fills us in on his style inspiration, industry mentors, favorite fall shows and more:


Who are your style idols?
The Rat Pack, James Dean, Jack Kennedy. I like the whole late ’50s/early ’60s clean, classic look. If you were wearing a suit, the lapel was narrow, the jacket was fitted and the pants were straight. I also like the idea of jeans and a white T-shirt. There was nothing tricky.

How has this affected your style?
When I need to look nicer than a T-shirt and jeans afford, I wear a fitted blue button-down shirt. I grew up in Charleston, South Carolina, and was very preppy. As an adult, I wanted to stand out and not be so conventional, but I’m still rooted in my preppy upbringing.

How are you not conventional?
I’m in a vintage T-shirt every day. And I only wear white socks, like they did in 1959. When you’ve got a pair of white socks on with your navy suit, some people think that’s unconventional, yet it’s rooted in something very classic.

Where do you get your vintage T-shirts?
Wherever I can find them. It’s always a treasure hunt. My friend Philomena gave me one of my favorites—it’s a heather gray T-shirt that says, “Bakersfield High School.” I’m also partial to light-blue ringer tees.

How is your closet organized?
By classification. I have all of my jeans in one place. I have all of my sweaters in one place. I have all of my T-shirts in one place. I have all of my shorts in one place.

How did growing up in Charleston influence you?
It shaped me in every which way—my style, personality and ethics. It’s an ultra-preppy city that’s absolutely beautiful. I love the way people embrace color there and dress conservatively in that chic kind of way.

Do you go back very often?
Yeah, like two times a year. But it’s always in my heart.

You worked in your father’s shoe store as a kid. What was that like?
My best memory is that I was not allowed to “walk” a customer, which meant letting a customer leave without buying something. That was a lot of pressure for a teenage boy. It gave me performance anxiety. If I was waiting on you and was going to “walk” you, I was supposed to tell you to stay put and not leave because I was going to get my daddy. The thought of that was beyond embarrassing.

But you stayed in the business.
I actually found my love of selling when I went to college and worked for other people, selling part-time. I saw that I was good at it but had to find that out for myself, which I couldn’t do under my father’s thumb.

Who are some of your mentors in the industry?
When I was first starting out, I worked for Donna Karan and learned so much about the relationship between a woman’s clothing and her accessories. Donna was so passionate about providing clothing for a woman by a woman. I also had a close relationship with Stuart Weitzman in the ’90s. He taught me to really believe in myself, which was invaluable.

Tell me about a person you admire.
Probably the most inspirational person I can think of is Steve Jobs. I loved how he saw the future. I believe in staying true to a vision and hoping people want to be a part of it. I love that he did that in an uncompromising way, because every time we compromise, we dumb something down.

How about a brand you admire?
The brand that always seems to stay at the top is Chanel. Karl Lagerfeld has a real curiosity about popular culture. He’s very tuned in and connected to everything, so he’s had tremendous success in keeping the brand relevant to customers of all ages.

When was the last time you were starstruck?
I met Emma Stone recently and I think she’s fabulous, so I didn’t know what to say. The same night, I was seated for dinner next to Gwendoline Christie, who plays Brienne of Tarth on Game of Thrones. Her character is very masculine and tough, but in person, she’s so beautiful and feminine and the opposite of the character she plays. I fell in love with her.

What were your favorite shows for fall 2013?
Junya Watanabe, Céline and Givenchy. The collection and show at Givenchy were just amazing. It was in this huge setting, with the models walking in a big circle and Antony Hegarty [of Antony and the Johnsons] singing live.

Where do you like to vacation?
I love going to the south of France.

What do you do when you’re there?

Sounds perfect. What TV shows have you been enjoying lately?
Mad Men, The Newsroom, Game of Thones, Homeland. I started watching The West Wing recently. That might be my favorite thing to watch right now.

Last but not least, what’s your favorite guilty-pleasure snack?
Pizza-flavored Goldfish.

Mary O’Regan

[Photo Credit: Emma Stone image from]

The Glamourai’s Kelly Framel returns for a second collaboration with Nordstrom, and this time around, the partnership includes designer Donna Karan. The New York-based fashion house tapped the noted blogger for the coming fall and resort seasons to blog about all things Donna Karan, modeling looks available both online at Nordstrom and in our stores.

Check out this sneak peek of Kelly’s first post that went live today, which features her stylish point of view on Donna Karan’s “7 Easy Pieces”:


The Essential Piece: Donna Karan Collection Mélange Stretch Sequin Skirt

Black Basics: Donna Karan Collection Vintage Stretch Leather Jacket & Slim Jersey Pants

“Many trends come and go with the ever-changing zeitgeist, and few are the movements that have had as lasting an impact on the way women dress as Donna Karan’s 7 Easy Pieces, a concept first debuted in 1985 that continues to shape the sartorial landscape of today,” says Kelly.

Dress Me Up, Dress Me Down: Donna Karan Seamed Body Dress with Jersey Sleeves, available in stores. For store locations, please contact a Designer Specialist at 1.877.543.7463 or via Live Chat (7am–1am Eastern).

To read the full article and see even more gorgeous imagery from her Montauk, New York photo shoot, visit Kelly’s blog,

Donna Karan’s design philosophy began with a simple motto: “Accentuate the positive to delete your negative.” For almost 30 years, her eponymous label has empowered women to take charge of their style, creating fashions and a lifestyle that not only help women look good but feel good too. Karan’s commitment to and pursuit of total-body wellness moved her in 2007 to establish the Urban Zen Foundation, which aims to inspire change through integrative and practical healthcare solutions.

HEROSummer Gatherings: Donna Karan’s home in Parrot Cay, one of the most secluded destinations of the Turks and Caicos Islands where she enjoys poolside dining

Leading the movement on the importance of eating clean, Karan and Urban Zen have heightened awareness on the benefits of raw nourishment. Hungry for change, The Thread asked Karan to curate a menu for the ‘conscious palate’ and the result is a healthy homemade summer meal that you can easily prepare yourself.

For me, summer is all about family and friends. I love having everyone to my house for a casual, intimate dinner. I’ll set out lots of pillowed banquettes to hang out on, and buffet tables so you can serve yourself whenever you’re ready. It’s the same atmosphere whether I have a dozen guests or two hundred. This way people come and go, bring friends, whatever. It’s easy, like all things summer should be. My environments are all indoor/outdoor—whether it’s my Manhattan apartment with its wraparound terrace, my Easthampton home on the water or our family place in Parrot Cay. At the beach, the look is natural—fresh flowers everywhere, a million candles—everything easy and relaxed. There’s always great music, or maybe we’ll have an outdoor showing of a new movie on a huge screen by the pool—everyone loves that.

Now the food. Maybe it’s the mother in me, but I only serve nutritious, natural food. It’s my way of taking care of those I love. I’ve been on a raw diet forever; it’s how I lost a lot of weight, but more importantly, it’s how you get the most nutrition from food. So even if I’m not serving raw food—which isn’t for everyone—I serve in the spirit of raw food.

Yummy: Check out the Clean Plates Cookbook for mouthwatering, great-for-you recipes

For appetizers, we’ll serve spring rolls or canapés of endive filled with beet tartare and orange zest. Maybe a grilled flatbread pizza with broccoli rabe, shiitake and truffle oil. Or steamer clams in a broth of leek, garlic and wine. I’ll have big bowls of salads—local Bibb lettuce, avocado and sunflower seeds with avocado green goddess dressing. And we’ll serve BBQ shrimp and scallops with parsley, tomato and basil. We’ll also have a timbale of brown-rice pilaf with grilled zucchini and scallion or maybe a quinoa timbale with fresh corn, red pepper and carrot. All fresh and divine. I provide chopsticks, which are great for eating slowly and deliberately, though of course knives and forks are optional. In the summer, meals like this are really easy, especially in the Hamptons, where the fresh produce is amazing and all locally grown. Go to any of the farmers markets and everything has been picked that day.

To drink, we’ll offer iced tea with fresh mint, sliced orange and raspberries or a vodka spritzer, also with mint and orange slices. And white wine and champagne. Of course, then comes the dessert table. You can always expect an indulgence or two, like triple cappuccino sorbet with toasted almond or watermelon carpaccio with lime and mint syrup. For the grandkids, we have their favorite: honey marshmallow s’mores with dark chocolate and gluten-free graham crackers. I always grab one for myself.

With the food and table preparations made, it’s time to choose an outfit for the occasion. I love one-stroke simplicity in a party dress, so either the Matte Jersey Infinity Dress (left to right), the Sculpted Bonded Jersey Dress or the Draped Mélange Jersey Dress. I’m always barefoot, but a flat, easy slide works too. In the city, you can wear one of these dresses with killer heels. It’s amazing how shoes shift the attitude of a dress. Whatever you decide to wear, you should look effortless, especially at the beach. Hopefully, you’ve spent the day on a boat or walking the shore, not getting ready for a party. Because to me, a party should make you feel relaxed and social. It’s a time to catch up with friends and loved ones in a warm and inviting environment.

Ready to plan your own summer celebration?
Check out our guide on reusable place settings that are perfect for outdoor entertaining.

Qianna Smith

[Food Image Sources: and]

When it comes to navigating through life, so much of what we know is passed down from mother to child. In celebration of Mother’s Day, we asked Donna Karan, Lubov Azria, Lela Rose, Rachel Roy, Pamella Roland, Rebecca Minkoff, Rachel Zoe and Kelly Wearstler to tell us, “What’s the greatest advice mothers can share with their children?”

Check out the candid, poignant family photos that each of these designing women generously shared with us…


Donna Karan: Make time for love. “The best advice a mother can give to her child is that love is about time−the time you spend with others, and time you spend taking care of yourself. You need to find the balance and do both,” says Donna Karan, pictured with her daughter Gabby on her wedding day in 2002. (For her special day, Gabby wore a short dress with an added long tulle skirt, made by her mother, of course!)

Lubov Azria: Live your dreams. “Each of my daughters has a unique journey they are embarking on, and I support them wholeheartedly. I always advise them with what I tell myself every day: Work hard, stay focused on your vision, and follow your dreams. Ralph Waldo Emerson once said, ‘Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm,’” says Azria, Chief Creative Officer of BCBGMAXAZRIAGROUP, which includes BCBG and Herve Leger.

This busy business woman is mother to 6 children with husband Max Azria. Above, Lubov (pictured second from left) enjoys some girl time on Malibu Beach with her daughters Anaïs, 16, Agnès, 14, Marine, 21, and Chloé, 18.

Lela Rose: Conquer with kindness. Designer Lela Rose keeps her motherly advice simple and sweet: “Be nice, be nice, be nice.”

The New York-based Texan transplant is pictured with her two children, Grey, 11, and Rosey, 6, and their two Yorkshire terriers, Stitch and Bobbin.

Rachel Roy: You can make a difference. “The best advice I give my girls, which my mother instilled in me, is the importance of giving back to those in need,” shares Rachel Roy, pictured with her two daughters, Tallulah Ruth, 5, and Ava, 13.

Pamella Roland: Easy does it. “As my children have grown, my best advice to mothers of young children would be to not sweat the small stuff−you let go and let your children learn by making their mistakes, and you have to pick your battles,” says Pamella Roland.

During New York Fashion Week, you can always spot her three children, Cole, Sydney and Cassandra, cheering from the front row.

We offer Pamella Roland in selected stores. For locations, please contact a Designer Specialist at 1.877.543.7463.

Rebecca Minkoff: Search for excellence. “Find your PASSION and give 100%. It may or may not be easy to find; maybe the search will be painful and long, but you will find it at some point. And the feeling of satisfaction knowing you have given 100% brings tremendous contentment,” says Rebecca Minkoff, photographed with son Luca Shai, who will turn 2 in September.

Rachel Zoe: Do the right thing. “Always be kind, always have manners and always be grateful. Never be greedy, never be jealous and never be cruel,” says Rachel Zoe on the words of wisdom she instills in her son Skyler, 2.

Kelly Wearstler: Be a go-getter. “The best advice I can give my boys is the same advice my mother instilled in me: the only person who can make something happen for you is YOU. Be compassionate, be self-reliant, and love what you do,” shares Kelly Wearstler with her boys Elliott, 9, and Oliver, 10.

On Mother’s Day, remember the women who gave—and lived out—the best life advice for you.

(Uh-oh: Still need last-minute Mother’s Day gifts? Don’t fret, we’ve got you covered!)

Qianna Smith
Photos courtesy of each designer