Marc Jacobs, an influential American designer, was born to affluent parents in New York City in April 1963. As a teenager he lived with his fashion-conscious grandmother and attended the High School of Art and Design. In 1984 he graduated from the Parsons School of Design with several awards, including Design Student of the Year. Jacobs met Robert Duffy, his long-term business partner, at the graduation supper and in 1986 the duo launched the Marc Jacobs brand. In 1989 Jacobs was named the head of Perry Ellis, where he created his infamous grunge collection for spring 1993. Fashion insiders loved his take on the slacker garage-band look, but his employer did not. He was fired immediately.
In his own words, Jacobs’s designs are “a little preppy, a little grungy, a little couture.” He is consistently inspired by the “cool girl”—whether she is a club kid or a famous ingénue like Sophia Coppola. His designs are subtle, witty, and celebratory, underpinned with elegance, and are wearable across lifestyles.
Jacobs signed with LVMH in 1997 to become the artistic director for Louis Vuitton. In 2001 he launched a diffusion line called Marc by Marc Jacobs. In 2013 Jacobs left Louis Vuitton to focus on his own brand.