Who was Miss Havisham, the character in Charles Dickens's Great Expectations, before she unraveled? Or at least, how did she dress? That's the question Prabal Gurung's fall 2011 collection, shown in the tents this afternoon, hoped to answer. The show was also inspired, Gurung explained backstage, by "how girls I've seen in Brooklyn dress up." He wanted the collection to be heavy on textures, adding, "It's more about taking precious fabrics like satin and and silk faille and washing it so it has a lived-in quality."
Karlie Kloss opened the show in one such crimson dress made from washed-silk faille — her very first walk in a Prabal Gurung show. "I needed someone who can build that character — like become really forceful," said Gurung, adding that a year ago he wanted to cast her, but couldn't. "I was doing something on [the blog] Fashionista, and I put it out there and said, 'You know, I hope one day she'll walk my show.' And a year later …" — she's opening in a cast that includes top models Joan Smalls, Liu Wen, Mirte Mass, Jourdan Dunn, and Constance Jablonski. "The agencies have been so amazingly supportive this season, I can't even believe it," Gurung gushed. "They pulled out all the stops. There's not a single girl that I'm 'eh' about."