New York Fashion Week: Rising star Prabal Gurung needs to stay grounded

For some reason this season, Prabal Gurung was anointed the new kid to watch. When he staged his first runway show in the Tents on Saturday, everyone was there -- department store buyers, magazine editors, even a celeb or two.

Why? Who knows. Oprah's a fan, the designer has a quirky name (pronounced Praa-ball) and a cute face, he grew up in Katmandu, started his career in India, and was design director at Bill Blass for five years.

Sculpted coats and skirts in camel, black and white wool cashmere with curvilinear seams had a Blass feel to them, but a bit too much bulk, and the floating panels, peplums and double layers weren't incorporated well enough into the designs.

One-shouldered silk gazar dresses, distinguished by sculptural ruffles, didn't feel that special either.

The best look -- a motocross-inspired minidress that was a patchwork of metallic oxidized lace and wool faille. Too bad he didn't stay focused on that technique a little longer.
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