On September 5th, ready-to-wear women’s clothing brand KÛR launched its Spring and Summer collection “Compact Traveller” with a fashion show, featuring a hybrid of business casual and leisure looks.
Founded in 2009 by Kasuni Rathnasuriya, the international brand centers around global, sustainable handmade clothing and accessories. At the French Institute Alliance Française, Rathnasuriya presented her newest collection which the KÛR brand has identified as being tailored towards “the strong and confident woman who is professional with an affinity for work, travel, and exploration.”
In an interview with The Knockturnal, Rathnasuriya shares her inspiration for her line. “I feel like it’s very different the way we travel, like there is a woman who is traveling for business,” she says. “They like to stay in another place and extend their trip to get the weekend, and stay there for probably leisure. Young millennials are traveling a lot, and we have B&Bs, and we do travel a lot, so that’s why I wanted to create a collection for the woman who is confident to explore.”
20 new ensembles from KÛR hit the runway, featuring pleats, pockets, pinstripes, and collars made out of lightweight linens, ideal for quick travel changes and compact packing. Capes, big pockets, and wide leg trousers and jumpers livened up muted colors and geometric laces seen on models.
The silhouettes are completed with KÛR’s signature handmade Dutch and Portuguese lace in geometric patterns, and top Japanese textiles. “I’m trying my best to keep it elegant, simple and very ready to wear,” admits Rathnasuriya. “Not very flashy, but mainstream colors like white, and I incorporate a lot of handcrafted lace. I’m working with something that’s old-fashioned, and people say it’s sustainable fashion.” She ardently feels that those investing in a piece should understand the process of its manufacturing.
With that in mind, authenticity is also a focus for KÛR, as Rathnasuriya hopes it is for all luxury brands today. Originally from Sri Lanka, a country that has seen Dutch and Portuguese influence portrayed in local fashion, Rathnasuriya embraces her authenticity by paying homage to her roots through use lace.
“This lace was introduced to Sri Lanka by Dutch and Portuguese in 1970’s, 1980’s, and it became very Sri Lankan in the years,” she says. “Right now I’m in this platform in New York Fashion Week, but I can share this story, which is very exciting for me.” Environmentally as well as socially conscious, KÛR’s lace helps to revitalize a dying art in Rathnasuriya’s native Sri Lanka, employing local craftsmen and empowering less-privileged weavers, mainly women, in its Southern coastal region.
Also included in the KÛR’s NYFW 2019 looks are hues of power statement hues of white, set against bold neutrals and shades of blue. These looks were topped off on the catwalk with slip-on oxfords in silver and white, as well as comfy mules and leather bags. The Spring and Summer collection also reveals a heavy artistic influence from the “Suprematism” art movement and the “Black square” painting of Russian Artist Kazimir Malevich.
On the place KÛR’ holds in upcoming trends for 2019, Rathnasuriya predicts, “I think Spring and Summer ’18, and all next year’s fashion will be sustainable, focused. People will be more focused on detail–intricate detail–and craftsmanship.”