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what donwan harrell learned from the tabloids


“People had been begging me—’when are you gonna do women’s?’ and I was like, ‘no, we’re just gonna take our time,’ ” designer Donwan Harrell recalled at last night’s Prps presentation at the Highline Ballroom. Admittedly, sometimes it takes an A-lister or two to nudge a burgeoning designer in the right direction. “Next thing I know, I’m standing in line at the grocery store and I’m seeing Katie Holmes and Megan Clark,” Harrell laughed, remembering the first time he noticed the Prps-clad actresses in the tabloids. “And it wasn’t women’s! So then I was like, am I on to something that I didn’t know?” He was. While borrowing your man’s jeans may seem like a cool idea in theory (it worked for Victoria Beckham, another Prps acolyte), sometimes the practice doesn’t always pan out, hence the niche for Harrell’s sure-to-be-coveted boyfriend jeans and shorts, along with a debut women’s collection that includes tie-dyed tees, cashmere tanks, and crocheted halter tops. “I design what I like to see a woman in,” Harrell says. “What I concentrated on was deviating from the typical stuff you could already get in your wardrobe—the five-pocket, tight-fitting jean. I didn’t wanna do that.” Judging by the turnout—the MGMT post-show performance may have had something to do with it, too—Harrell will be able to continue doing exactly as he pleases.

Photo: Theo Wargo/WireImage for Block 9

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