Celebrated fashion designer Naeem Khan comes to Vegas to support a cause close to his heart.
Naeem Khan in his New York City showroom, surrounded by some of the elaborately beaded gowns that have won him fans from Beyoncé to First Lady Michelle Obama.
“I come from a country where it was very important to give back,” says fashion designer Naeem Khan, who was born in Mumbai, India. “It was instilled in me as a child that whatever you make belongs to you—you can enjoy it—but you have to give back to the world. I grew up with that philosophy, so giving back is a big part of life.”
Khan clearly manifests the values he was taught, helping to raise money for a range of charities around the globe, including the Alzheimer’s Association and Unicef. But on April 8, he’ll be in Vegas as the featured designer at the Flair for Care Fashion Show, the Nathan Adelson Hospice’s annual fundraiser at Wynn Las Vegas, which offers Khan’s designs at its chic boutique Outfit. “I’m looking forward to it,” Khan said when we caught up with him backstage at his runway show during New York Fashion Week. “I want to make sure the show is amazing, so that we raise a lot of money for the hospice.”
By enlisting a globally admired designer like Khan, the event is sure to attract not only the city’s most generous philanthropists, but also its fashion cognoscenti. “The goal is to raise $1 million,” says Hedy Woodrow, Wynn’s senior vice president of retail, who is instrumental in organizing the show every year. “The funds support the hospice’s Uncompensated Care Program. All patients, regardless of their ability to pay, are cared for, ensuring that no one ends the journey of life alone, afraid, or in pain.” Aiding those who need end-of-life care is particularly important to Khan. “I’ve had friends who, from Alzheimer’s or from cancer, have been through so much,” he says. “Hospice is such a big part of life, so we have to support it.”
The event begins with a cocktail reception for more than 600 people, during which guests can enter drawings or auctions for the many donated items, including a trip to Geneva and a tour of the Jaeger-LeCoultre watch factory, tickets to a Formula One auto race in Montreal, and clothing and accessories by top designers like Givenchy, Tom Ford, and Manolo Blahnik. The fashion show, emceed this year by comedian Brad Garrett, will follow, along with a seated luncheon.
As for how Khan was chosen, Woodrow notes that his method of working in many ways mirrors the extraordinary care provided by the Nathan Adelson Hospice. “Naeem is such a gentleman and an extremely talented individual,” she says. “The attention to detail that he has on his garments is the same attention to detail that everyone at the hospice takes with each patient.” Khan’s focus and precision are one reason that red carpet staples like Beyoncé, Allison Williams, and even Michelle Obama have been snapped in his designs, as have international symbols of glamour such as Queen Noor of Jordan. Since his first collection appeared in department stores in 2003, his brand has grown to include bridal gowns as well as Timeless by Naeem Khan, a wildly successful diffusion line for HSN.
For Flair for Care, Khan will show his Fall 2015 collection, which debuted in February at New York’s Lincoln Center during Fashion Week. The color palette includes emeralds, gunmetal grays, and ochers, while the couture fabrics for which the designer is known feature intricate beading and embroidery. Many of the evening gowns have full, sweeping skirts—a theatrical element that should be right at home in Las Vegas.
“The journey has been not only about the beautiful clothes,” Khan wrote in his program notes for the collection, “but also about the people that have become an integral part of this art, from traditional artisans in India to luxury European fabric makers.” Indeed, it is Khan’s commitment to people—whether his customers, his employees, or strangers in need—that makes him such a singular force in the fashion industry. Outfit, Wynn Las Vegas, 702-770-3465; The Nathan Adelson Hospice’s Flair for Care Fashion Show will take place April 8 at Wynn Las Vegas.