Let's start with the basics. Michael Kors was born Karl Anderson on August 9th, 1959 on Long Island. He's best known for his impeccable eye towards designing classic American sportswear for women, but in recent years, he's expanded his offerings to dabble in just about every arena. The man can do it all! Kors is the son of Joan Hamburger, a former model who gave her son his love for fashion, and husband Karl Anderson, who bequeathed to his son his own name. When Kors was just five years old, his mother remarried, and Michael was told if he wanted to, he could change his name. Already an illustrious, inquisitive child, then Karl Anderson selected a name for himself: Michael David Kors. Kors' mother honored his request, and from there on out, Michael Kors was his name. It's a good thing, too – because Karl Anderson simply doesn't have the same ring to it! Kors grew up in Merrick, Long Island, a town that also housed Hollywood sensation Lindsay Lohan and a slew of other young celebrities. These days, Kors can be found in New York City, where he moved when he started school at the Fashion Institute of Technology.
At the ripe age of 19, Kors moved to New York to study at the Fashion Institute of Technology, New York's version of the prestigious London fashion school, Central St. Martins. For those who want to work in fashion, FIT is a great first step – and clearly, the school served Kors well. By 1981, he'd launched his namesake line, Michael Kors womenswear, which was immediately scooped up by buyers at luxury retailer such as Bloomingdales, Bergdorf Goodman, Lord & Taylor, Neiman Marcus and Saks Fifth Avenue. Kors spent almost fifteen years working on his own line, and in 1997, he was named the women's ready to wear designer and creative director for beloved French fashion house Celine. During his time at Celine, Kors was credited with turning the fashion house around, thanks to incredible accessories ( a precursor to his amazing work with watches that was still to come) and a critically acclaimed ready to wear line that women couldn't get enough of.