As a lifestyle fashion brand, Michael Kors is meant to appeal to the everyday wardrobe needs of real women. But can it make every one of its customers look sexy? The designer tells Noelle Loh “yes”.
This feature was to be accompanied by a video interview of quick-fire questions with Michael Kors on the things and people he deems sexy. His all-time favourite fashion sex symbol, the sexiest heel height, cleavage or no cleavage – essentially fun questions that would elicit advice on the art of seductive dressing from one of fashion’s most enduring names. But the request was turned down.
A lot of it had to do with time. It was mid-November last year. The designer was in town to witness the unveiling of an eponymous orchid, film a segment with CNN’s Alina Cho, speak with more press (like yours truly), attend a cocktail-making session with regional influencers, grace the opening of his flagship boutique at Mandarin Gallery, and dine with VIPs and industry insiders – all in a matter of two days. (He did also bookend the trip with off days, but come on, the man needs a break.)
Yet through the half an hour I was given to speak with him at Raffles Hotel, I realised that, even if his schedule had permitted, he might have rejected answering such categorical questions about sexiness all the same. For someone who’s spent 35 years designing clothes and accessories that appeal to real women universally, and turned that into one of the most successful fashion lifestyle labels around, it’d be against his nature to stereotype sexiness; to boil it down to a specific look or physical attribute.
“Sexy for every woman is a different thing so (to me), it’s about having confidence… Does a woman have a kind of confidence when she walks into a room?” he says when I prod him for a definition. “It’s not about how tight your dress is, how high your shoes are, or how bare you are. People sense confidence, and that’s what I think
As predictable and politically correct as that might sound for a designer known to be both savvy and gregarious, Kors has the work to back him up. Every season, his collection balances elegance with practicality, glamour with comfort.
Take Spring/Summer 2017, in which he updates the classic white blouse in light cotton gauze and adds ruffles on the sleeves. In the same collection, he puts a modern, relaxed spin on a sequinned maxi dress by using ultra-light silk crepe and adding side cut-outs. In short, his pieces assure women that they look and feel special – and can still do what they need to do every day.
Here, Kors distils his S/S ’17 collection to dish out some words of wisdom.