Influential Designers Calvin Klein

The fabric - Is meant to be a quick informative read that will display a breakdown of various fabrics that are used or currently being created within the fashion industry. This part of our series is about Influential Designers.

Photo captured by Jason Turner Model Rosa Serrata wearing Calvin Klein Illusion-Trim Fit & Flare Midi Dress

Calvin Klein was born on November 19, 1942, in the Bronx, New York. In 1968, Calvin Klein & Barry Schwartz founded Calvin Klein Limited, a coat shop in the York Hotel in New York, with $10,000. The first Calvin Klein collection was a line of coats and dresses featured at the New York store, Bonwit Teller. One year later, in September 1969, Klein’s designs appeared on the cover of American Vogue.

By 1971, Klein had added various styled product lines like blazers and lingerie to his women's collection. By 1977, annual revenues had increased to $30 million, and Klein had licenses for items like shoes, belts, and sunglasses. In 1978, Klein claimed sales of 200,000 pairs of his jeans the first week. In the mid-1970s, he had created a designer-jeans craze by putting his name on the back pocket.

Klein quickly learned that associations with celebrities licensing agreements and controversial advertising would offset any predictable looks. The ads helped generated $12 million in royalties in Calvin Klein in 1980. Kleins theory for his marketing ads was by not focusing on the product. Calvin also was one of the first designers to gear ads towards the X generation. Instead of using the supermodels popular in the 80's in favor of the young Kate Moss. Utilizing her to help market the Iconic CK One fragrance.

Klein learned from various fashion designers who had used licensing as a way to generate funds for their primary collections. American, Halston and French designer Pierre Cardin where two of the main pioneers that used and profited by the idea of licensing. The difference between them and Klein was strictly reserved artistic control over all products and advertising bearing his name.

In December 2002, Calvin Klein Inc was sold to Phillips Van Heusen Corp (PVH), for about $400 million in cash and $30 million in stock, as well as licensing rights and royalties linked to revenues.

Book Reference - The World's Most Influential Fashion Designers written by Noel Palomo Lovinski

Photo captured by Jason Turner of YSYM Films


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