What is DKNY?
DKNY is a globally popular clothing company formed by Donna Karan and her husband Stephan Weiss. DKNY was incorporated in the year 1984 and has its headquarters in New York’s 7th Avenue.
Donna Karan is a designer and entrepreneur who originally started working for fashion legend Anne Klein when she was still in her 20s. Karan was able to have a good relationship with Klein and after only 4 years with the company, she was considered to be her successor. But her quick success with the Anne Klein company did not actually come overnight. Donna Karan had fashion and creativity running in her blood as she was born from a family exposed to the clothing business. She had a custom tailor for a father, and a sales representative and showroom model for a mother. Though her father died early in her life, she also had a stepfather who sold clothes for women. With a passion for creativity, Donna Karan studied at the Parsons School of Design in New York. From then on, she honed her skills and eventually landed a job with Anne Klein.
When Anne Klein died in 1974, Donna Karan became head of design for the company. Anne Klein’s company was owned then by Takihiyo, a Japanese textile company. But her success in the company gave her the idea to form her own company. And with the blessings of her Japanese owners, Donna Karan formed DKNY with second husband Stephan Weiss in 1984.
In its early years, DKNY became known for refined and practical clothes for women. With her early success, the press named her as the “Queen of 7th Avenue”. Over the years, DKNY has evolved into a bigger brand of clothing and eventually had fashion lines for the male market too. Today, DKNY is a fashion empire with more than half a billion dollars in sales worldwide. Other than clothes for women and men, DKNY now also offers fragrances, watches, clothing lines for kids and teens, and lingerie among others.