Monday, June 9, 2014

Norma Kamali: 1st Life – Women’s Fashion, 2nd Life – Women's Empowerment

What's your most powerful body part?

Farah Fawcett wearing Kamali
swimsuit she made famous,
donated to the Smithsonian
Norma Kamali has been designing women’s fashion since the mid-sixties.  She’s introduced her “sleeping bag coat”, hot pants, parachute wear, sweats attire, high-heeled sneaker and celebrity swimwear to multiple generations of women.  We probably all wore one of these Kamali inspired designs - a few of which are in the permanent collection at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York - because they weren’t just intended for those with big incomes or small figures. She is also credited with being one of the first fashion designers to introduce technology to her business. 

But then Norma focused inward promoting dance, exercise, overall fitness and her olive oil products in her Wellness Café as a way for women to address their whole self-image.  And that was all before she took an even deeper look inside our collective psyches to examine how women are objectified throughout their lives.  She created as a way to get all of us talking about how that manifests itself and to empower women to overcome those insecurities.  I had the pleasure of hearing Norma speak from her heart about women objectification at the S.H.E. Summit this past week in New York.  You can hear a lot of that passion in an interview of her with Glen Beck (yes, Glen Beck).  And here's a video of her discussing her current fashion and life philosophy, her Second Act, with Forbes Magazine. Empowerful! 

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