An independent spirit with the ability to turn heartbreak into sell out fashion,Norma Kamali made a name for herself by being an innovator. Kamali, a New York native, graduated from the Fashion Institute of Technology in 1964 and soon opened her own shop. She designed under the name Norma Kamali Ltd. for ten years until after her divorce in 1978 when she started OMO (an acronym for ‘on my own’.)
Kamali started out creating glitzy designs typical of the late 1960’s. She was credited for starting the hot pants craze and often used gold lamé fabric and jeweled embellishments on many of her flirty creations. In 1974 Kamali’s look began to change and she focused more on draping with innovative fabrics. Her best known design is her cozy down filled coat modelled after the sleeping bag Kamali slept in during her divorce. Her designs work to transform functional clothing into something beautiful. Always on the cutting edge of design, Kamali was one of the first fashion houses to sell clothing online in 1996.