Published originally on ELLE.com
There was no evidence of a quarter life crisis for Donna Karan last night at the #DKNY25 Birthday Bash. Instead, the designer relished in the moment by commemorating her 25-year reign with a uniquely New York celebration. "Donna is an amazing woman," model-of-the-moment Karlie Kloss told ELLE.com. Then, she headed inside a large warehouse space that had been transformed into a neon graffiti paradise for the event, complete with an ode to the former DKNY mural on Houston Street.
Emmy Rossum agreed with Kloss: "She's obviously incredible. Her clothes are really wearable for a modern woman. She's sleek like the city." Rossum, also Manhattan-bred, can relate, "Coming from New York and being a city kid, I grew up in DKNY." She added that she has a year-up on Donna, "I've been alive longer than she's been designing by a year and a half!"
While 16-year-old Hailee Steinfeld can't claim more years than the brand, as one of fashion's newest darlings, she understands the power of DKNY. "I love that it's really sporty," she said. "It's always so bright and enthusiastic. I feel like you're able to put on her clothes, make them your own, and feel really great about it."
As the frenzy died down on the red carpet, the crowd geared up for a performance by DKNY girl Rita Ora, whose arrival was heralded with flashing lights and an enthusiastic introduction by Kloss and Joan Smalls. As soon as Ora took the stage—in a black and white DKNY sweatsuit, no less—the room became electrified as she performed hits like this summer's "Radioactive." But the musical performances didn't end with Ora; Iggy Azalea, A$AP Rocky, and A$AP Ferg helped keep the party going with surprise sets. Afterwards, Karan joined the performers on stage and they presented her with a giant birthday cake in the shape of a New York taxi cab.
Of course, it wouldn't be birthday party without a few presents, and Kloss made sure that Karan didn't go without. The model, and unofficial fashion industry baker, whipped up some cookies for the designer. "They're the Perfect 10 [Kookies]. There are two kinds—vegan and gluten free. Donna is very healthy, so they're good for you, and it's all for charity as well." It was a sweet treat to end an even sweeter night.