Liz Claiborne, Fashion Designer, Entreprenuer

Liz Claiborne spent her childhood in New Orleans until she dropped out of high school to travel to Europe to study art.  Throughout the 1950’s and 1960’s, she worked for several male designers in New York City, before starting her own company.  As a pioneer fashion designer, Liz Claiborne’s, stylish work clothes have helped women break through the glass ceiling for 30 years revolutionized women’s apparel.  In 1976, she defied the male-dominated industry and broke out on her own, creating Liz Claiborne, Inc., a label that became synonymous with women’s rise in the workforce.

Department Stores Began to Stock Pants for Women

The label turned fashion convention on its head by forcing department stores to stock both skirts and pants in the same section for the first time.   Claiborne shunned feminine frills and catwalk couture for tailored pieces that could be mixed and matched to serve the working woman’s wardrobe.

Husband Became the Secretary Reversing the Traditional Roles

Claiborne also reversed traditions by appoint her husband, Art Ortenberg, as secretary of the company, while she continued to hold the rank of executive until her retirement in 1989.  Her commitment to style and design is ever present in current thinking and the way women work.  She will be remembered for her vision, her entrepreneurial spirit and her enduring compassion and generosity.  Claiborne was also a dedicated philanthropist, who funded millions of dollars of programs to help women, including domestic violence services and business training for budding entrepreneurs.


-You can create your own trends

-Move outside the traditional box


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