Donna Karan on How New York Fashion Week Has Changed Through the Decades

As part of our FN Legends video series, designer Donna Karan sits down to talk about past and present New York Fashion Weeks. “ I believe we’re giving too much information out,” she said at her Urban Zen store in Manhattan’s West Village. “And now, because of communication, everybody sees everything. You know, and the customers see it six months before, which makes absolutely no sense whatsoever. It’s like watching a movie — you don’t see the movie before the movie is coming. You see the movie when the move has come,” she explained. 

Adding: “In the fashion industry, the consumer is confused.” Karan also reminisced on what made fashion so great in her early days as a designer in the 1970s and 1980s. “Everybody was individualized. You had the American world, the British world, the French world, the Italian world. And it was . . . the Americans were black. The British were funk,” she said. 

Having just launched a shoe collection with Kenneth Cole made with artisans in Haiti, Karan said she very much appreciates the distinct differences in style and dress across the world. “I like to feel differentiation between our cultures,” she said. “And that’s where I’m at, which is a little bit different than most designers.” Watch the video above to see the full interview. 

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