Anything is possible. Nowhere else is that statement more true than in New York.
I started my clothing line there, in a neighborhood that once housed meatpacking companies. I rode my bike past men in bloodied white aprons and took care not to lose balance on uneven cobblestones. I took an industrial, man-operated, freight elevator up to my studio. Our elevator music was the sound of heavy chains hoisting us up, slowly and intentionally. And, as we passed the second floor, the mysterious sounds of fine art being created would fill the chorus. Both Matthew Barney and Jeff Koons made some of their iconic pieces there. A piece of living art herself, Bjork, was a common fixture.
When visionary fashion director Jeffry Kalinsky opened his namesake store, Jeffry, on 14th Street, designers started to flock to the, once intrinsically unfashionable, Meatpacking District. The fine artists in my building were replaced by designers Christian Audigier, Lutz & Patmos, Chesterfields of England, Christy Turlington, and Rag & Bone. Storefronts were carved out, trendy restaurants moved in and the scent of cow flesh began to dissipate.
I’m often asked the secret to discovering personal style, and I find myself sharing the lessons I’ve learned from New York. True style is bred from evolution. It emerges from adventures. It’s a result of our beliefs and our attitude. It never forgets but it doesn’t dwell either. Always moving forward, true style is inspired and firmly grounded in confidence and strength. Style is an expression of where we came from and where we’re going. It comes from the inside, out.
Like New York, our clothes tell a story. It’s up to us to decide what story we want to tell.