PaperCity Magazine

PaperCity Dallas December 2021

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OF KORS R u b y m a y t h e precious material associated with 40th anniversaries, but in the case of Michael Kors, it should be gold. After all, he is the golden boy of American sportswear — and it's especially obvious when perusing archival shots, given his blond cascading curls and megawatt smile. Kors launched his namesake company in 1981 and is now a household name around the globe. Born on Long Island, he demonstrated a preternatural talent with clothes, even convincing his mother when he MICHAEL'S MILESTONE, PIVOTS, AND AN OPTIMISTIC LENS BY BILLY FONG Mello, came over and asked me who some of the pieces in the window were by, and I said, "They're mine." So, she said, "Can you come across the street with your line to show our buyers?" Of course, I said yes, but what she didn't know is that I didn't have a line! But I whipped one up very quickly, and Bergdorf's was my first account. Some might call you the preeminent American sportswear designer. What does the term American sportswear mean to you today? Has the modern woman changed much over the decades? Kors: Today, American sportswear is no longer strictly American. It's global. As for whether the modern woman has changed, sure, of course, we change with the times. However, women all over the world still appreciate the luxury, versatility, and ease that are the essence of sportswear. You've had the opportunity to dress many celebrities through the years for numerous awards shows. Does anyone stand out? Kors: There have been so many favorites — I could never pick just one! Kate Hudson, Regina King, Zendaya, Nicole Kidman, Jennifer Lopez … the list goes on and on. Collaborating with celebrities for the Met Ball is always great fun. Looking back at 2020 through an optimistic lens … Did you learn anything about yourself while sheltering in place? Did you pivot in any ways with your company that might continue into the future? Kors: I definitely learned a great deal, both professionally and personally, from the experience of being locked down. I'm almost never home in New York during the spring. We're always traveling, so those first few months were a very different experience for us. And we learned to appreciate the smaller things — the flowers blooming on our terrace, finding a store that was open and was five that she should cut the bows off her wedding dress for her second marriage. On his recent whirlwind visit to Dallas, we stole a few a few moments to chat. PC: Take us back to the beginning again. Kors: I was working in Lothar's, a fabulous boutique on 57th Street in NYC, while I was in college at FIT. I started working there as a part-time sales associate. Then I left school and ended up doing everything — managing the store, doing the windows, and designing the clothes for them. One day the [then] fashion director of Bergdorf Goodman, Dawn Jammie Holmes (Continued) Vintage Polaroid of the designer at work 58

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