‘A large amount of women, when they need to maintain a powerful situation, wear a dress. Everyone wears a gown,’ he says. ‘And suddenly, she’s inside a suit. So I think there was people watching saying, “Oh, you know what, I was able to look feminine and powerful and se-xy at one time – I was able to wear Michael Kors Australia online.”‘ The suit out of stock overnight, globally. ‘Fifteen yrs ago, there have been still distinct borders in vogue, and that’s all gone,’ he says, talking about the impact of the social-media universe where many people are a fashion critic and likes on Instagram may be as important as shoots in glossy magazines. Fifteen in the past, remarkably, he was only opening his first store, in The Big Apple. He has 509 stores worldwide, 13 of these in the UK and Ireland, including a brand new Sloane Street branch in the uk. Seven more will open here next season, such as a Regent Street flagship during the early 2016.
Kors matured in Merrick, Long Island, a suburban town outside New York City. He was enthusiastic about style in the first place, he says, as well as at 5yrs old advised his mother, Joan – a former Revlon model – on the bridal dress on her second marriage, coaxing her clear of frills in favour of the more streamlined and flattering style. ‘Even at this age, I knew how the woman should wear the gown, not other way round,’ he says. The numerous women in his family were a tremendous influence in the introduction of this conceit. ‘It was a bit just like a Fellini or perhaps Almodóvar film in my family,’ he laughs. ‘I was surrounded by these very strong women, plus they all had different fashion perspectives. ‘My mum was very understated, while my grandmother was over-the-top and glamorous,’ he recalls. ‘I had one aunt who was very bohemian, and the other aunt who was a whole-on se-x-bomb [she apparently wore a bikini to his bar mitzvah]. And So I saw that whenever people placed the right thing on, that they had somewhat of a spring with their step.’
As a teenager, he regularly ventured in to the city, hanging out at Studio 54, that has been frequented with the fashion crowd like the iconic Vogue editor Diana Vreeland and writers including Truman Capote. He began studying design at New York’s prestigious Fashion Institute of Technology, but dropped out before graduation to build up their own collection. From the cut-throat arena of New York fashion, that can take some serious self-belief, I have faith that. ‘I was sure of myself. I knew a few things i liked and so i outleydney the things i wanted,’ he nods. ‘At once I had little idea in regards to the mechanics of fashion, but I knew the kind of things which I needed to create, and i also knew the type of woman I wanted to design for. I didn’t start scared about whether or not this works,’ he says. ‘When I take part in the game, I understand I want to win.’
Fifteen years ago, there are distinct borders in vogue, and that’s all gone. His confidence paid back. At 22, his first collection was bought by New York’s most glamorous Michael Kors store Sydney, Bergdorf Goodman, and championed by Anna Wintour, then fashion editor at New York City magazine. His first catwalk show came 36 months later, and then he spent several years as creative director in the French fashion house Céline before opening his first stand-alone store on New York’s Madison Avenue in 2000. He unveiled the diffusion and accessories line Michael Michael Kors in 2004 – a similar year he joined the hit television show Project Runway as a judge – as well as two years later launched a shop selling accessories and homeware. Nowadays, even he seems to come up with himself being a brand – ‘That’s very Michael Kors,’ he says on several occasions.