Apr 29, 2015
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Public School duo take on the creative direction of DKNY

Apr 29, 2015

A revolution at Donna Karan. The New York fashion house, a subsidiary of LVMH since 2001, has announced a new team for DKNY. It has just recruited Dao-Yi Chow and Maxwell Osborne, the designers of the young successful brand Public School, as the creative directors of its second line.

It has also hired the former creative director of worldwide marketing communications for Apple, Hector Muelas, as DKNY’s chief image officer, a new position.

Maxwell Osborne and Dao-Yi Chow

It's obvious that Caroline Brown, chief executive of Donna Karan since only three months, is not wasting any time. Indeed, she seems to be doing all she can to relaunch the iconic New York brand, which has lost a bit of its allure these past few years.

The company, which currently has more than 275 stores and 80 shop-in shops in 41 countries, has come back to the forefront thanks to campaigns with top model Cara Delevingne.

CEO Caroline Brown really brings a revitalising touch to DKNY, which had been led since its launch in 1989 by Jane Chung. Taking her place are Dao-Yi Chow and Maxwell Osborne, the two designers met in 2003 at the Sean John brand, who launched their label, Public School, in 2008, a ready-to-wear street and luxury brand for men and women.

Dao-Yi Chow and Maxwell Osborne, who are fiercely proud of their New York identity, were quickly noticed for their sportswear-inspired laidback style playing with graphics and ample volumes.

Hector Muelas

The quickly rising duo notably won the very first Menswear International Woolmark Prize in January, the 2014 CFDA prize for Menswear Designer of the Year, as well as the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund in 2013. Their first DKNY collection will be unveiled in September during New York Fashion Week.

The founder of the label, Donna Karan, will continue in her role as creative director of Donna Karan Collection, all while retaining an advisory role for her young DKNY line.

In terms of its image as well, the organisation is totally changing with the arrival of Hector Muelas. Most recently at the helm of worldwide marketing for Apple Watch, prior to this Muelas held managerial and creative roles at Creative Artists Agency in Los Angeles and at Wieden + Kennedy Amsterdam, where he developed campaigns for various big brands, including Nike and Coca-Cola.

His job at Donna Karan International (DKI) will be to oversee the brand image, design and marketing services, and the digital and e-commerce platforms.

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