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Michael Kors talks international fashion as New York Fashion Week approaches

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In keeping with my pre-NYFW series, today is all about one of the torch bearers of American Fashion.

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Today’s subject found his way to me via a series of serendipitous events, which have reminded me of the power of the written word as well as that of the internet in our daily lives.

That said, Michael Kors is a ubiquitous presence in our lives, whether we're opening a magazine, watching TV, strolling the toniest shopping streets around the world or ambling through any department store. For those of us who have been around longer than last season, so to speak, Kors can sort of be summed up as an amalgam of Ralph Lauren, Halston, Zoran, Beene, Norell, Blass, Ellis and many of Seventh Avenue’s greatest and most memorable designers; in simpler terms, he is a result of what made New York a fashion powerhouse.

In a way he is extremely old school, and I say that in the most complimentary way, and think that so many new designers could use a healthy dose of what was as opposed to the distorted vision they have of what it should be!

Where Ralph Lauren sold us the wasp lifestyle, Michael Kors transports the consumer to a time and ideal of a 21st century jet setter lifestyle … slick, chic, soigne and cosmopolitan. He is an all American kind of guy, a born and bred New Yorker whose legacy will be felt for years to come.

Let’s get inside the mind of Michael Kors!

Examiner: What is the most treasured possession in your wardrobe?

Michael Kors: One of them is the Cartier Tank Watch I bought myself when I was in high school. I spent all the money I had saved up doing caricatures at sweet sixteens and bat mitzvahs. But it was worth it. It changed everything I wore, how I felt about myself and how other people saw me.

EX: What is your most sterling trait and what trait do you treasure most in your friendships?

MK: Loyalty. Leo’s are very loyal - many of my favorite people are leo’s.

EX: What is your bliss?

MK: Iced tea and a beach

EX: What is your guilty secret?

MK: Tabloid TV.

EX: Where is your ideal home?

On a private island filled with friends and family.

EX: If you could not be a designer or retailer, what would you be?

MK: A Broadway producer.

EX: What is on your bedside table right now?

MK: Diana Vreeland Memos: The 'Vogue' Years.

EX: What do you wear to bed?

MK: black michael kors briefs

EX: What if any, book are you reading now or last read?

MK: "A Story Lately Told" by Anjelica Huston

EX: What’s your advice to the "newcomer?"

MK: Stay true to yourself and your vision.

EX: Who or what is your inspiration/style icon?

MK: My personal style icon is Steve McQueen. My design style icon is a mix of everyone from Jackie O. to Lauren Hutton to my mother.

EX: What is the best advice you ever received?

MK: Stay true to who you are - people won’t trust you if you aren’t authentic.

EX: In 3 words or less, describe the current state of fashion.

MK: Democratic and Fast.

EX: If you won a $200,000,000 power ball (lottery), what is the first thing you would buy or do?

MK: I’d donate it to World Food Programme or God's Love We Deliver.

EX: If you could invite up to 4 people for dinner, who would they be…dead or alive?

MK: Jackie O'Nassis, Andy Warhol, Lucille Ball and Madonna - all Leo’s!

EX: What is your favorite movie /or movie star?

MK: I could watch funny face with Audrey Hepburn a million times.

EX: Whose opinion do you value most and why?

MK: My customers, because theirs is the one that matters most.

EX: What store or which designer do you most like to shop in or wear?

MK: I mostly shop when i travel; I love things that have a story.

EX: What’s your take on magazines, books versus the internet?

MK: Print all the way.

EX: Do you have a dream collaborator?

MK: I would’ve loved to work with Halston.

EX: What is your crowning achievement thus far in your career?

MK: I’ve been very fortunate. Every award is unique in its own way, from being an influencer on the 'Time 100' list to receiving the Golden Heart Award from God’s Love We Deliver. They all mean something to me.

EX: What’s your music library like?

MK: It’s got a huge range. Everyone from Coldplay to Cher to Frank Sinatra.

EX: What and where is your favorite meal?

MK: A cheeseburger from [New York restuarant] J.G. Melon.

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