Michael Kors: clothing for fast-paced lives
February 6, 2021
Michael Kors was an unusual child. He had a unique eye for fashion, so much so that, at the age of five, he redesigned his mother’s wedding dress for her second marriage.
Kors comes by his love of fashion honestly, having grown up in the fashion industry and having a model for a mom. He began designing clothes in earnest when he was a teenager in the basement of his parents’ home in Merrick, a small town about 23 miles outside of New York City.
In 1977, Kors enrolled at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City but stayed only nine months before dropping out and taking a job at a boutique called Lohar’s. His talents shone and he went on to become designer and visual display head for the store.
Dawn Mello, fashion designer for Bergdorf’s (which was across the street from Lohar’s), discovered Kors and invited him to show his collection to Bergdorf Goodman’s buyers.
Four years later, in 1981, Kors launched his Michael Kors women’s label at Bergdorf Goodman.
In 1997 Kors launched a lower-priced line and at the same time was named the first women’s ready-to-wear designer for French house Celine (Celine is a luxury French fashion House founded in 1945 by Céline Vipiana).
During his tenure at Celine, Kors introduced a critically acclaimed ready-to-wear line. He launched his menswear line in 2002.
Kors left Celine in October 2003 to devote his time to his own brand. In Michelle Obama’s first term official portrait she can be seen wearing a dress designed by Kors.
The MICHAEL Michael Kors line, launched in 2004, includes women’s ready-to-wear apparel and accessories.
By the end of the first fiscal quarter, Kors Lifestyle stores numbered 770 around the world. He currently, has Collection boutiques in New York, Beverly Hills, Palm Beach, Chicago, and Southampton.
In the U.S, Kors women’s runway collection, labeled Michael Kors Collection, can be found at Bergdorf Goodman, Saks Fifth Avenue, Neiman Marcus, Bloomingdale’s, as well as many specialty shops. The Michael Kors Collection is also available at stores in London, Paris, Cannes, Milan, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Shanghai, and Seoul.
The year 2016 marked the 35th anniversary of Kors’ business.
Michael Kors has dressed a long list of celebrities, including Nicole Kidman, Reese Witherspoon, Lupita Nyong’o, Jennifer Lopez, Heidi Klum, Viola Davis, and many more.
Kors was a judge on the Emmy-nominated television program Project Runway.
In January 2014, Forbes reported that Kors had reached a personal fortune in excess of $1 billion.
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