Prabal Gurung on creating change in fashion: ‘I want to give back’

Prabal Gurung is passionate about giving back to help those less fortunate.The Nepalese-American designer launched his eponymous debut line in 2009 at New York Fashion Week, and since then, has dressed the likes of former U.S. First Lady Michelle Obama…

Prabal Gurung is passionate about giving back to help those less fortunate.

The Nepalese-American designer launched his eponymous debut line in 2009 at New York Fashion Week, and since then, has dressed the likes of former U.S. First Lady Michelle Obama, Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Anne Hathaway.

During an interview at Vogue’s Forces of Fashion conference, the 40-year-old recalled how he decided to “make more than clothes” after seeing his designs on the cover of a magazine in 2011.

Since then, he established the Shikshya Foundation in Nepal with his siblings, which provides much-needed education to underprivileged children.

“In eight years, we’ve been able to impact over 50,000 lives,” Gurung said of the organisation, which will soon start educating incarcerated women in the country.

“The reason I wanted to do it was that fashion is great, and that’s my first love, and I love doing all of that. But it can’t just be about that; it has to be more than that,” he continued. “The Instagram followers and the platforms that we all have, it can’t just be for my selfies, you know? It would have to be for something else. I want to give back.”

Elsewhere in the interview, Gurung joked that he first came to the U.S. in 2011 “to meet Oprah”, and also revealed that he’s been working with cashmere producers in Nepal to ensure his luxurious pieces for his collections are made sustainably.

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