The 10 Steps To Designer Success: The Christopher Kane Story Thus Far

17 January 2013 by

This was the week that the career and life of Britain’s most preternaturally talented designer was to change forever. Since 2006, Christopher Kane has been the toast of London town, dazzling us all with his original references (Stephen King, Frankenstein), fabric innovations (Squeezy pencil cases, Lucite bolts) and FROW-worthy X-Factor. But now Kane has won fashion’s equivalent of the Willy Wonka’s golden ticket - a majority investment from French conglomerate PPR. With PPR’s backing, Monsieur Kane’s label is set to go global – just look at the trajectory of Stella McCartney and Alexander McQueen (two Brit brands that have had the PPR treatment) - now worth £100 million a pop.

In celebration of Kane’s major milestone, we take a look at his 10 steps to fashion stardom in the gallery below. Three cheers for Christopher Kane!

Click Through For Kane's Top 10!

1. Fashion Beginnings

The baby of the family, Christopher Kane grew up with his four siblings near Motherwell, south east of Glasgow. Kane went on to earn his fashion spurs at Central Saint Martin’s where he gained a place on the prestigious Fashion Design Degree programme. During his time at CSM, Kane worked for Giles Deacon and won the Lancôme Colour Award in 2005, he also caught the eye of a certain Ms Donatella Versace.

2. The Graduate

Kane gained his post-grad MA in 2006 and immediately bagged the Harrods prize which included a £1,500 investment and a window in the iconic store. His collection of va va voom mini dresses embellished with super brass rings earned him a place on Versace’s Atelier cutting floor as well as a gig consulting for the brand’s shoes and accessories.

3. Sibling Stars

Kane established his eponymous label later in 2006 and recruited his big sister Tammy who studied at the Scottish College of Textile Design to run the business side as well as assisting on fabrication. In April 2006 he won the Young Designer of the Year at The Scottish Fashion Awards.

4. Dynamic Debut

In September 2006 Kane burst on to the London Fashion Week scene with one of the most talked about debuts of all times. Fluoro nu-90s bandage dresses complete with lace, zips and industrial belt fastenings sent the FROW into a frenzy. Browns boutique snapped up the entire collection.

5. Adveristy Overcome

A year later Kane survives the theft of his complete S/S 2008 collection just days before his show, creating a whole new line to rapturous press acclaim.

6. High Street Hero

For A/W 2007 Kane launches his first collection for Topshop. His high street pieces become major hits with the fashion pack with style stars like Alexa Chung sporting his alligator dress.

7. The Versus Years

In September 2009 Donatella tapped the young Scot’s talents once again to re-launch Versace’s second line Versus. "Christopher reminds me of my brother Gianni when he was young," explained Donatella at the time.

8. Gongs Season

Also in 2009 Kane snapped us his first British Fashion Awards gong winning the title for the BFC Best British Collection of the Year.

9. Heard It on the Grapevine

In September 2012 Kane presents what is to be his last collection for Versus accompanied by the formidable Beth Ditto who provided his catwalk soundtrack. Rumours begin to circulate that Kane is set to succeed Nicholas Ghesquiere at Balenciaga.

10. Hitting The Big Time

January 2013, French Luxury conglomerate PPR buys a 51% stake in the Christopher Kane label, providing the investment needed for growth into a truly global brand. Expect Kane fragrance, handbags and stores to come in the coming years.


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