In this candid memoir, featuring a foreword by Barbra Streisand, renowned designer Donna Karan shares intimate details about her lonely childhood, her four-plus decades in the fashion industry, her two marriages, motherhood, and her ongoing quest for self-acceptance and spiritual peace.
Donna Karan was born into the fashion business - her father was a tailor, and her mother was a showroom model and Seventh Avenue saleswoman - yet Karan dreamed of becoming a dancer like Martha Graham or a singer like Barbra Streisand. Fashion was her destiny, though. My Journey traces Karan's early days as an intern at Anne Klein, the creation of her Seven Easy Pieces, and the meteoric rise of her company. Along with juicy industry stories, Karan candidly discusses her difficult mother and traumatic childhood, her turbulent romantic life, all the loved ones she has lost over the years, and her personal awakening.
That awakening set Karan down a path of spiritual discovery and self-improvement. Karan tried everything to find, as she writes, "calm in the chaos." But she also reveals how a chaotic life, fueled by endless curiosity and childlike impulses, helped her design seminal collections for global powerhouse brands Donna Karan New York and DKNY. She also details how she has channeled her creativity into philanthropic work, particularly her early advocacy for AIDS awareness and research, and the creation of her Urban Zen Foundation, which led to her efforts in Haiti.
Karan's life has been crowded with glamorous characters and adventures around the world. But she sometimes still feels like that awkward teen from Long Island who never fit in - which makes her all the more endearing. Brimming with Karan's infectious energy, My Journey is about much more than the fashion world: It is the story of a young woman whose vision and hard work made her a role model for women everywhere - a woman who dreamed big, fought to have it all, broke the rules, and loved passionately along the way.
"Donna's creativity and passion as a committed philanthropist are matched only by her gift for friendship. Whether she's making the world more beautiful or giving a Haitian artisan the tools to create a sustainable business, Donna has always led with great heart and wonderful humor. I am so grateful that our shared commitment to Haiti and its people brought us closer together, and I can't wait to see what she does next." (President Bill Clinton)
"What we take for granted often comes from the most revolutionary of sources. In New York in the 1980s, no one was more radical than Donna Karan. While 'dress for success' was the mantra of that time, Donna never saw that as a directive to simply ape what guys wore. She created a way of dressing that was womanly, practical, and empowering. The singularity of her vision and the courage of her actions brought New York to the world - and the world to New York." (Anna Wintour)
"My Journey is the story of an extraordinary personal, professional, and spiritual life. It's a journey defined by Donna's incredible resilience, her inward search for calm in the midst of success, and her insistence on always following her heart." (Arianna Huffington)
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to be continued....
- KELLY M ADAMICK
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