Michael Kors Inez & Vinoodh

Michael Kors

Designer, Michael Kors

The designer and Project Runway personality infused his once-bankrupt brand with a clean, sporty glamour and took the company public in 2011.

United States Designers 2013 BoF 500 2013 2014 BoF 500 2014



“From the very beginning, I was convinced you could be sexy and sporty at the same time,” Michael Kors told Women’s Wear Daily in March 2011, on the occasion of his company’s 30th anniversary. The king of American "jet-set" sportswear has turned his conviction into a multi-billion dollar company and positioned himself at the very centre of New York's fashion scene.

Michael Kors Holdings went public in 2011, to date the company’s share price has tripled making Michael Kors one of the dominant players in the ‘affordable luxury’ market. The company currently has over 400 stores in 89 countries, with flagships in New York, London, Paris, Milan, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Seoul, Singapore, Dubai and Istanbul. 

Michael Kors’ interest in fashion began at a young age. As a five-year-old, the future designer advised his mother on her wedding dress. The designer went on to open his own boutique, which he named Iron Butterfly, selling clothes he had customised or designed himself. Kors moved to New York in 1977 and enrolled in the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City, though he left the school after nine months to take a job at Lothar’s, the trendsetting boutique on New York’s West 57th Street. 

He began his own label in earnest in 1981, with Lothar’s as his first customer; the first Michael Kors Collection runway show was held for the Fall 1984 season. In its review, WWD judged it a “collection of haute, classic sportswear” and “elegant but minimal dressing.”



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