Michael Kors life and biography

Michael Kors picture, image, poster

Michael Kors biography

Date of birth : 1959-08-09
Date of death : -
Birthplace : Long Island, New York,U.S.
Nationality : American
Category : Arts and Entertainment
Last modified : 2011-10-06
Credited as : Fashion designer, KORS, Project Runway

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Michael Kors was raised on New York's Long Island. As a toddler, Kors worked as a model, appearing in national campaigns for products such as toilet paper and Lucky Charms cereal. Kors' biological parents split when he was quite young, and he got his new name at age 5 when his mother married businessman Bill Kors. "My mother said, 'You're getting a new last name, so why don't you pick a new first name?'" Kors said. He chose Michael as his first name and his second-favorite, David, as his middle name. His mother also allowed him to design her wedding dress. Kors, already a fashion addict, was thrilled with the prospect. "The marriage didn't last, [but] the pictures are timeless," Kors quipped later.

From their suburban home in Merrick, New York, Kors scavenged every bit of fashion intelligence he could gather. "I practically hyperventilated every month when Vogue arrived, and I loved shopping," he said. Kors moved to New York City in the 1970s to attend the Fashion Institute of Technology. He loved the city more than the school, however, and dropped out after two semesters. In 1978, Kors went to work at the French boutique Lothar's, which allowed him to design and merchandise his first fashion collection. The well-received collection generated enough interest that Kors was able to start his own fashion line. Michael Kors Women's Collection launched in May 1981, and was sold in the high-end department stores Bergdorf Goodman and Saks Fifth Avenue.

Kors' simple, elegantly tailored clothing and his charmingly persuasive sales techniques proved to be a winning combination. Kors traveled across the United States for small fashion shows at private homes, known as "trunk shows." When he was 23, he convinced the formidable fashion editor Anna Wintour-then of New York magazine, now the editor of Vogue-to view his collection. The glitzy Madison Avenue showrooms he'd later have were still a long way off; Kors displayed the collection laid out on his bed in his apartment. From these humble beginnings, he soon picked up celebrity fans like Barbara Walters and earned awards for his designs.

In 1990, however, Kors; company was forced to reorganize under Chapter 11 bankruptcy. After getting back on his feet, Kors launched KORS Michael Kors, a lower-priced line. He also became the creative director of Celine, a French fashion house, in 1997. In the six years he held that position, he continued to expand his own brand, launching menswear, accessory and perfume lines. In 2003, he won the coveted Menswear Designer of the Year award from the Council of Fashion Designers of America, the most prestigious prize in American fashion.

In 2004, Kors was asked to be a judge on a new reality television show called Project Runway. He almost turned it down. "Reality show? Fashion on television?" Kors recalled thinking. "I thought that only fashionista freaks, gays and men wanting to see Heidi Klum in a short dress would watch it." He was wrong. The show premiered December 1, 2004, and became an immediate hit with fans and critics. Kors' quips and blunt criticisms were fan favorites, and he continued as a judge in subsequent seasons.

In January 2009, the estate of artist/designer Tony Duquette sued Kors for trademark infringement after Kors allegedly used Duquette's name and images in promoting Kors' 2009 resortwear collection.

In 2010, Kors received the Oliver R. Grace Award for Distinguished Service in Advancing Cancer Research, an annual honor bestowed by the Cancer Research Institute, a U.S. nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing immune system-based treatments for cancer. He received the honor at a black-tie ceremony held June 16, 2010 at The Mandarin Oriental in New York City.
In June 2010, Kors was the youngest recipient ever of the Geoffrey Beene Lifetime Achievement Award from the CFDA and received the Fragrance Foundation’s FiFi Award for Lifetime

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