Luxury, elegance and quality: this is what designer brand Tom Ford embodies. Through his determination he managed to make a name for himself worldwide. Today the designer lives married with his spouse Richard Buckley and son Alexander John Buckley Ford in New York. How did the fashion label Tom Ford come into being, how does the designer live now and which products are in the range of the luxury brand? All this and much more you can find out here!
Career: From creative director at Gucci to fashion designer
Fashion designer Tom Ford is shaping an exciting success story. As a former art student, today’s successful man paved his way to becoming a designer for Gucci and YSL, until he founded his own brand in 2005. We introduce you to Ford’s inspiring career as a famous fashion designer and director.
Youth & Education
Tom Ford was born in Austin, Texas in 1961. In the course of his youth, Ford tried out many courses of study, including art history and art, which, however, did not make him happy. Even at a young age, the 59-year-old was interested in fashion. Thus, in his early 20s, Ford applied for internships with well-known designers, eventually landing a much-coveted internship with fashion label Chloé. During this time, he moved to Los Angeles where, in addition to many internships, he also took on modeling jobs, mostly for television commercials.
However, Tom Ford was determined to have a degree, so after his time in LA he decided to study architecture at Parsons School of Design in New York. He completed a year abroad at the French partner university in 1984 and 1985. Since Fort had discovered his passion for fashion, he took all his electives in fashion design. In 1986, he graduated with a bachelor’s degree in architecture and interior design.
Marc Jacobs, Chloé, Gucci & YSL
For Tom Ford, designer Calvin Klein has always been a great role model. After his internship at Chloé, Fort was sure: he also wanted to enter the fashion industry to become a designer. After graduating from Parsons, he applied to Calvin Klein several times but was not hired. He had luck with the Korean designer Cathy Hardwick, where he worked for her in New York as a design assistant. Ford landed a second success in 1988 with Marc Jacobs, who hired him as a designer for the Perry Ellis jeans line.
But how did Tom Ford get his job as creative director at luxury brand Gucci? Ford was recruited 12 years after working at Marc Jacobs, by former Bergdorf Goodman chief buyer Dawn Mello to work for Gucci as a designer in Milan. The young designer accepted the job offer and moved to Milan.
Since Ford did his job as a designer at fashion label Gucci very well, he was appointed design director in 1992. Two years later, he was appointed creative director. In 2000, Gucci and fashion brand Yves Saint Laurent merged. Ford took on the role of women’s prêt-à-porter designer at YSL in Paris, in addition to his post at Gucci.
Vogue Interview: Tom Ford’s secret to success
In his interview with Vogue, Tom talks about his career, his success and his motivation as a designer and director.
Emergence of the designer brand Tom Ford
In April 2005, Ford announced the creation of the Tom Ford brand. Domenico De Sole, who was former president and CEO of Gucci Group, joined Fort. In the same year, the designer announced that he would collaborate with the Markolin Group to manufacture and sell eyeglass frames and sunglasses. He also formed an alliance with Estée Lauder to co-create the Tom Ford beauty brand. In 2007, his first flagship store opened at 845 Madison Avenue in New York. The opening ceremony coincided with the debut of Tom Ford’s men’s and accessories collection. The long-awaited showcase of the womenswear collection took place in September 2010. Since then, the Tom Fort brand has enjoyed a strong reputation, with quality and elegance combining to create a luxury fashion label. With his previous experience at Gucci, YSL and Marc Jacobs, the designer had the perfect prerequisites to start his own brand.
From fashion designer to film director
In 2009, the designer created the film “A Single Man”. Many then wondered why Ford suddenly became a director instead of just focusing on the fashion business. What many didn’t know, however, was that Tom Ford sees himself as a designer whose true artistic side lives from filmmaking. Doubts about his film career were finally laid to rest when it became known that the designer was making his directorial debut for the famous actors Colin Firth and Julianne Moore. Seven years later, Ford released “Nocturnal Animals,” his long-awaited second film. Starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Amy Adams, the designer once again created a highly acclaimed film, which even earned him a Golden Globe nomination for his direction.
Tom Ford received many awards in recent years, for his film and design career. We present them to you!
- 2010: Nomination for the Menswear Designer of the Year Award (CFDA)
- 2009: GQ USA Men of the Year and GQ Germany Men of the Year
- 2007: Vito Russo Award (GLAAD)
- 2006: US Accessory Council Award for his sunglasses collection
- 2005: Anrdre Leon Talley Lifetime Achievement Award from the Savannah College of Art and Design
- 2004: Rodeo Drive Walk of Style Award; International Best Dressed List Hall of Fame
- 2003: Fashion Design Achievement Award (National Design Award)
- 2001: US Accessory Council Award for his sunglasses collection; Best Fashion Designer (Time Magazine); GQ Designer of the Year
- 2000: Fashion Editor’s Club of Japan; British GQ International Man of the Year; Superstar Award from Fashion Group International’s Night of Stars USA
- 1999: Style Icon Award of the ELLE UK Style Awards
- 1997: People Magazine’s 50 Most Beautiful People
- 1995, 1996, 1999, 2002: VH-1/Vogue Fashion Award
- 1995, 2001, 2002, 2004, 2008: CFDA Award
Family & Spouse
The now 59-year-old designer, has lived with Richard Buckley since 1987. Buckley, former editor-in-chief of Vogue Hommes International, met Ford at a fashion show in 1986. At the time, Richard Buckley was living in Paris but moved to Italy to join Ford as he was suffering from cancer. The editor-in-chief gave up his job at Vogue as the commute became u exhausting for him with his illness.
Tom and Richard became parents for the first time in 2012. Together they gave birth to their son Alexander John Buckley Ford in Los Angeles. Two years later, the couple decided to get married. Now the fashion designer lives with his family alternately in Los Angeles, London and New York.
Assortment, prices & target groups
Designer Tom Ford covers almost all areas with his fashion brand. From bags, fashion for men and women, eyewear and fragrances to beauty products: At Tom Ford you will find everything! For every season Ford designs a new collection, which includes jackets, pants, tops and many other garments. The brand is one of the high-priced fashion companies next to Gucci & Co. Since many garments are exclusive, they have to be requested. The prices can be compared with other companies like Chanel or Prada. There is no specific target group of the fashion label, the spectrum of buyers ranges from young to old.
Tom Ford fashion show
Have you wondered what a fashion show from the famous designers looks like? How they show you! Model icons like Kendall Jenner, Gigi Hadid and Bella Hadid have walked for the American designer.
Now also in the magazine: Tom Ford
You can also find the fashion brand guide with the luxury brand Tom Ford in the magazine! Now on fivmagazine.com, read the whole magazine online: