Michael Kors

"She is a woman of any age, any nationality, and who is fashion conscious without being a fashion victim," top designer Michael Kors has said of the clients he creates clothing for

And it is that elegant approach which has made him such a hit with some of the world's most beautiful women, including Charlize Theron, Heidi Klum, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Madonna.

On 9 August, 1959, in Merrick, Long Island, Michael Kors born Karl Anderson Jr - was welcomed into the world by former Revlon model Joan and husband Bill. After discovering a passion for clothes early on, the young Michael would drop by his fashion industry-employee uncle's workplace during the week, and go shopping with his mum at the weekend. He later admitted: "For every male designer the way their mother dresses has an impact forever. My mother is very unmovable in her taste, her likes and dislikes."

By the time he was 19 the wannabe creative had enrolled at New York's Fashion Institute of Technology. His first job was merchandising and designing a collection for an upscale boutique, and it was the success of this which prompted him to branch out on his own. In 1981, with the vision of a luxurious line of chic sportswear in mind, he established the Michael Kors label and debuted his first collection.

Sixteen years on he was named the first women's ready-to-wear designer and creative director at French fashion house Celine. During his six-year tenure Michael - who took on the role of a Project Runway judge in 2004 - transformed the label with his critically-acclaimed collections and eye-catching jewellery. He went on to launch accessories under his own label, and further extend his credentials with a menswear line.

Since then the award-winning talent, who was named womenswear designer of the year in 1999, has launched two new arms - Michael, which includes handbags, shoes and ready-to-wear, and Kors. His commercial portfolio also includes fragrances.
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