'Donna Karan seduced me by stripping naked when we met': Fellow designer Christopher Bailey makes a racy revelation
18:34 GMT, 15 November 2012
Donna Karan, the creative genius behind the DKNY and Donna Karan New York brands is part of the fabric of the fashion industry across the globe, but seems less keen on keeping the fabric on herself.
Christopher Bailey has revealed that during his first nerve-wracking meeting with her as a young designer she stripped off totally.
‘She completely seduced me with the way she sees the world. She stripped naked within about three minutes of meeting, and tried on all my things. That was one of my first big wake up calls to how nutty – and how brilliant – this industry is’
Christopher Bailey revealed the first time he met Donna Karan he saw more than he was expecting
Christopher Bailey, now chief creative officer for fashion giant Burberry recalled this fashion fabulous incident in a speech made at the 2012 CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund award ceremony in New York.
Describing her as ‘incredible’ he also described some of the crazier nights they worked through until the early hours of the morning.
He said: ‘At three am there would be a masseur coming around to give you a massage – that's weird.
‘At four am, we would all sit in a little circle and we'd chat over the fabrics – that was weird to me too.
'And then at five o'clock Demi Moore would come in for a fitting.’
Karan, 64, remains chairwomen and designer of her company, but has previously told of her rocky rise to the top of the fashion industry, starting as a shop assistant in New Jersey.
Though it is hard to imagine now, Karan's rise to the top of the fashion world has not been smooth
Though she attended Parsons School of Design, she surprisingly never graduated.
'I worked in a clothing store, at Shurrie's, as a salesgirl,' she said. 'I wanted to be an illustrator, not a designer, so I would sketch in the dressing room.
'I tell anybody in the fashion industry, “If you want to be a designer, you must work in retail.”'
Her personal life too, has not been smooth. She met her second husband at the engagement party for her first wedding to her childhood sweetheart Mark Karan.
Watercolour palette: Colours in Donna Karan's most recent collection included rose pinks and soft caramels
Donna said of the event: 'I was engaged to be married to Mark, and then all of a sudden, at the engagement party, Stephan walks into the room, and I thought, Oh my God, who is he'
Though she did marry Mark, they divorced in 1978 having had a daughter together.
Karan married Stephan Weiss in 1983 and he became CEO of the Donna Karan Company before his tragic death from lung cancer in 2001.
Although she should be collecting her pension the American designer is showing no signs of slowing down: her latest collection wowing at New York Fashion Week last month.
Models showcased dresses in romantic watercolour silks in soft caramel, rose pink, aquamarine and lavender and critics declared it 'otherworldly' and 'breathtaking'.