Style A member of one of Uruguay’s oldest ranching families, designer Gabriela Hearst seeks out luxury at its source: in top-quality raw materials and workmanship.
FARM TO FASHION
By Harriet Quick
with a plate of rare bavette steak covered in a vibrant
green chimichurri sauce, Gabriela Hearst is enjoying a
lunch in London with gusto. “Chimichurri—it’s from my
part of the world,” she tells the waiter. Her Uruguayan
upbringing on the family ranch instilled in her a love
of good produce, farming, horses and nature. Hers is
certainly not the conventional background of a fashion
designer, but Hearst is something special in the business.
“There are strong hints of my background in the brand.
I went to a British school and wore a uniform every day,
and the traditional gaucho dress is also a uniform. I love
button-down shirts,” Hearst says. “Because we were so
remote, we had very few garments in our wardrobes, and
what we had was not ostentatious but good quality. It was
bought to last.” She now splits her time between the ranch
and her New York home in the West Village, as she works
on the eponymous womenswear line she launched last fall.
Hearst paints an elegant but strong picture of a modern
woman, in clothes that segue effortlessly between work
and play, town and country. Quality, authenticity and
practicality run deep through her designs. Her Autumn/
Winter 2016 collection features gossamer fine cashmere
knits made by a progressive co-op, tweed pieces handmade of merino wool from her family ranch, silk twill
fit-and-flare dresses with her trademark herringbone
stitching down the torso, and chiffon knife-pleat skirts
that ripple prettily in the breeze. The geometric patterns
on Hearst’s patchwork suede pieces were inspired by
from the start
was to create
for an active
on the go, and
I want to provide
solutions for her.