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July 30 2014

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An American In Paris, With Room To Spare

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Michael Kors was waxing slightly nostalgic early this sunny morning at his new store on the Rue Saint-Honoré about a time when traveling to the City of Light was his commute. That would be his almost seven years—from 1997 to 2003—as creative director at Celine. “It was like, ‘Which city are we in? New York or Paris?’ ” joked Kors, dressed in his uniform of black blazer and black T-shirt. “I remember when I decided I wasn’t going to re-sign the contract; literally, at the same time, the Concorde stopped flying. I was like, ‘God is sending me a sign!’ ” Kors added, “Marc [Jacobs] was smart. He just left. I was like a ping-pong ball.”

That was then. This is now. Like Ralph Lauren and Tommy Hilfiger last year, Kors has created his own American-in-Paris footprint, and a sizable one at that. The sparkling white two-story, 7,000-square-foot store is the brand’s biggest ever. And as such, it has a little world of Michael Kors inside with clothes and accessories from all three tiers of his collections. If you visit, don’t miss the second floor with its white leather Barcelona chairs, Mongolian lamb pillows, and a lovely view out onto the street.

It should be noted that the Rue Saint-Honoré boutique will only hold the biggest Kors store title until this August, when the designer opens his Rockefeller Center flagship. And another retail debut: The company opened its first lifestyle store on Regent Street in London. But as busy as Kors himself might be, he also sympathized with the bleary-eyed editors trickling through this morning on their way to Stella McCartney. “Listen, I understand how it is. I never go to fashion shows, but when I started doing Project Runway, I became an editor,” he said. “When they do their final show, the first thing I say is, ‘Edit. Make it quicker!’ ” Oh, Michael, do spread the word.

Photos: Courtesy of Michael Kors

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