As the CEO of her eponymous company, Tory Burch has created an American lifestyle brand known for color, print and eclectic details that includes ready-to-wear shoes, handbags, accessories and beauty.
But social responsibility has always been an integral part of her now-global business, covering more than 100 freestanding boutiques.
Tory herself has also won several awards, including the CFDA for Accessory Designer of the Year; Accessory Brand Launch of the Year from Accessories Council of Excellence; and Rising Star award from Fashion Group International. Tory was also named one of Forbes’ Most Powerful Women in the World.
With no traditional training in fashion, Consuelo Catiglioni broke the mold with her creation of fashion label Marni in 1994.
Known for its quirky, feminine combinations of bright colors, bold graphic patterns and elaborate fantasy prints, the offbeat-yet-elegant aesthetic of the family-founded line has enjoyed rising prominence over the years.
Today, the brand exceeds $100 million in sales per year, and Castiglioni has been named one of the 100 most creative people in business.
Herrera presented her first collection of women’s ready-to-wear at New York’s Metropolitan Club in 1981, becoming an almost instant success in the fashion world.
Shortly thereafter, Carolina Herrera New York was born, and the haute couturier aligned her name synonymously with the city and all things luxury. Over the three decades that followed, Herrera would establish a globally recognized style known form its consisten aesthetic of effortless elegance and modern refinement.
Today, Herrera has been named everything from “Fashion’s First Lady” to CDDA’s “Designer of the Year.” She has also received Geoffrey Beene’s Lifetime Achievement Award, Fashion Group International’s Superstar award, and Nat King Cole Award for her charitable works and contributions to the EIF Women’s Cancer Reseach Fund.
Since first entering the fashion world in 1972, Diane’s iconic designs have come to symbolize power and independence for an entire generation of women, catapulting her company to become the global luxury lifestyle brand that it is today.
In 2005, Diane received the CFDA Lifetime Achievement Award for her impact on fashion, and one year later was elected the organization’s president, an office she continues to hold.
Today, Diane continues to impart her positive impact on the world, supporting female leaders and entrepreneurs while revitalizing New York’s historic Meatpacking District and fostering emerging talent in the fashion industry.
As chief designer of the international company bearing her name, Donna Karan has come to see design as an expression of who she is as a woman.
Since beginning her long career in fashion in 1984, Karan has been saluted six times by CFDA, and in 2010 she was nominated for their womenswear designer of the year award. In 2003, Karan became the first American designer to receive Fashion Group International’s Superstar award.
Today, she uses her company’s visibility and resources for social causes through her Urban Zen initiative, bettering our world through causes like AIDs awareness and education while providing support to pediatric AIDs foundations and Ovarian Cancer research.
Burton’s most publicly acclaimed work to date may have been her design for the royal wedding of Catherine Middleton and Prince William, Duke of Cambridge in April 2011. But her fashion career began long before that debut.
First working as personal assistant to Alexander McQueen, Burton was later appointed Head of Womenswear of the McQueen brand.
Today, she serves as its sole Creative Director and the only successor to its beloved founder. In 2012, Burton was named in Time 100, an annual list of the 100 most influential people in the world assembled by Time.
For Isabel Marant, elegance lies in the invention of attitude, combining simplicity and personality into each of her collections.
Beginning with her jewelry collection in 1994, Marant would open her first store in Paris just four years later, and a second, one year after that.
Her second line, Etoile, launched in 2003, and in 2006, Marant would take her empire global – first opening a far east location before arriving in New York and Madrid.
Today, she continues to explore new territories and strives to translate them into her own vocabulary using her own words.
Brazilian fashion model, entrepreneur, philanthropist, and goodwill ambassador for the United Nations Environment Programme, Gisele Bündchen has truly done it all.
But her newest venture is in the world of design, with the supermogul creating a collection of lingerie in her name.
From fashion to fanfare, Gisele always finds a way to share her visions through various aspects of her life.
A philanthropist, model and actress, Liya Kebede added fashion designer to her list of roles with the creation of lemlem.
The fresh, chic women’s and children’s line takes an undeniably African spin on modern clothing while preserving the art of traditional weaving in her native Ethiopia.
As founder of The Liya Kebede Foundation and Goodwill Ambassador for the UN’s World Health Organization, Kebede has truly added a sense of diversity to the clothing market, while fueling prosperity in another.
As the current Vice President and chief designer of the Versace Group, Donatella Versace has been the first fashion designer to use notable celebrities in the broadcast of her clothing into the world on the catwalk and other public media instead of using unknown models.
Branching into other fields, she has led the company’s creation of the luxurious resort, Palazzo Versace on the Gold Coast of Australia, featuring a broad collection of Versace furniture and bedding in its lavish rooms.
In 2010, Donatella’s charity work earned her a Do Something With Style Award nomination from VH1 for her work providing art supplied to children and creating a tote bags from which proceeds would go to Starlight and the ONE Foundation.
After earning a degree in Political Science from Milan University, Miuccia Prada began designing accessories for the family business, founded in 1913
With work that took an introspective and intellectual approach, she became the driving force of the development and international expansion of Prada, taking the fashion world by storm with a radically innovative process.
Throughout her career, Miuccia Prada has received numerous awards for her visionary contributions to international fashion, including honorary doctorates and awards and international awards. She has also been named one of the 100 most influential people in the world by Time Magazine.
Co-founded in 2004 by Georgina Chapman and Keren Craig, Marchesa has since been accepted into the CDFA and was one of ten finalists in the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund.
Under Chapman’s direction and with Craig’s textile design, Marchesa has launched a bridal direction, a line of handbags, and the Marchesa for Lenox tabletop and giftware collection. Most recently, the brand launched their debut fragrance, Parfume d’Extase, exclusively with Sephora.
By age 23, this native New Yorker was the youngest ever Vogue fashion editor and stylist, remaining with the magazine for 16 years before moving to Ralph Lauren as a design director.
In 1990, Vera opened her first flagship store on Manhattan’s famed Madison Avenue, introducing fashion to the bridal industry with revolutionary designs and refined detailing.
The year 2010 marked Vera Wang’s 20th anniversary as a brand, a celebration of two decades spent at the forefront of fashion.
In the late 1990s, Victoria Beckham would rise to fame with the all-female pop group Spice Girls, dubbed “Posh Spice” by British media. Almost two decades later, Beckham remains in the spotlight as a model, entrepreneur, author and fashion designer.
An internationally photographed style icon, Beckham’s career in fashion now includes designing a line of jeans for Rock & Republic and later designing her own denim brand, dVb Style. She has also released sunglasses and fragrances, a range of jewelry and handbags, and has two best-selling books on her life and style.
Beckham has been named “Designer of the Year” by the British Fashion Awards, and one of the 100 most powerful women in the United Kingdom by Woman’s Hour.
As the daughter of Paul and Linda McCartney, Stella’s entrance onto the creative landscape came as no surprise.
After launching her own line, McCartney signed on as chief designer at Chloé, creating a delicately feminine collection that was well-received by the world of fashion and proved she was more than just a name.
In 2001, McCartney went onto develop her own label as part of the Gucci group, opening her New York store in 2002. Today, she continues to expand on her line while supporting organizations like the Ethical Fashion Programme and PETA.
Now creative director of Chloé, Clare Waight Keller began her career in fashion at just 21, working in womenswear for Calvin Klein in New York.
Four years later, Keller accepted a position at Ralph Lauren where she worked directly under Lauren for the launch of the brand’s top tier Purple Label for Men.
Subsequently taking on roles at Tom Ford and Scotland’s Pringle, she would finally move to Paris with her young family to join the Chloé brand.
Rachel Roy is a designer, entrepreneur, philanthropist and mother known for designs that inspire women to feel smart, confident and individual.
From her first collection in Spring 2005, Rachel has created modern iconic pieces that continue to be the cornerstone of women’s wardrobes. A passion matched only by her love of giving back, Rachel has worked with organizations such as OrphanAid Africa to Kindness is Always Fashionable and Children’s Hope Orphanage.
Today, Rachel is a member of the Council of Fashion Designers of America and continues to be actively engaged in the evolution and integrity of the fashion industry.
Donna Karan founded Urban Zen in 2007 as a space and a place to create, collaborate, communicate, change and to help find the calm in the chaos of the modern world. Urban Zen embraces a holistic ‘past, present and future’ approach, connecting the dots through partnerships with established organizations.
Inspired by the illness of her husband Stephan Weiss, Karan founded the groundbreaking Urban Zen Integrative Therapy (UZIT) Program, which integrates eastern healing modalities with western science, with over 400 certified therapists working today. The UZIT Program has lead to esteemed partnerships with UCLA, Beth Israel Medical Center, Kent State University and YogaWorks.
After Haiti's 2010 earthquake, Urban Zen launched Hope, Help & Relief Haiti in collaboration with leaders in music, fashion, film, finance and art. Today, Karan works tirelessly alongside The Clinton Global Initiative to develop and support sustainable opportunities in Haiti by bringing artisan products to a global market. Similarly, Urban Zen is in part supported by the Urban Zen brand and stores, where you will find artisan objects of desire and cultural treasures, as well as the Karan-designed Urban Zen clothing. For every problem, says Karan, there is a creative solution - especially when it comes to the issues that touch us all.
As Executive Vice President of Development and Acquisitions of The Trump Organization, Ivanka Trump handles both the domestic and global expansion of the company’s real estate interests.
But when she’s not leading one of the world’s most well-known real estate brands, she’s fulfilling her role as founder of Ivanka Trump Fine Jewelry, launching to great success in 2009.
Today, the brand has boutiques in SoHo, New York and Beijing and is sold through independent jewelers and department stores across the globe. It’s rapid evolution, due to her innate understanding of modern luxury and a vision that inspires elegance in a new generation.