The story of the celebrity fashion designer and film director shows that anyone can climb to success if (and only if) they are determined to succeed.
The celebrated fashionista, Thomas Carlyle Ford, was born in Austin, Texas (on 27th of August 1961) from where he moved with his parents to Santa Fe where he completed his high school education.
To further his education pursuit, Ford moved to New York City with the plan of studying history at New York University (NYU). However, he dropped out of NYU after his first year and decided to focus on acting in television commercials. During his stay at NYU, he was introduced to the then-happening night club, Studio 54 by Ian Falconer. His time at Studio 54 is a major part of his fashion style today.
Picking up from where he stopped academically, Ford decided to go back to school, but this time to pursue the Arts. He enrolled at Parsons The New School for Design to study interior architecture, but eventually switched over to fashion in his final year.
From his childhood days, Ford has always had a thing for fashion and design. Of course, he didn’t start designing clothes from childhood, however, he spent most of his play time painting and rearranging the furniture in his home.
After several shots at different career choices, it was obvious fashion is where his heart lies. In fact, most of the buildings he designed while studying architecture had some sketches of clothes in them. Therefore, he took the bold step of switching to fashion in his final year.
After college, Ford sought a job at Cathy Hardwick’s sportswear company for about two months before securing a position with the renowned American designer. During an interview, Hardwick revealed her initial intention was to discourage Ford, but later had to hire him. According to Hardwick, Ford called her office every day for an entire month. To get him off her telephone, she picked up one of his numerous calls and told him to come for an interview. few minutes later, Ford was in the office ready for the interview.
Stunned Hardwick then realised that Ford had been calling from the balcony. Still bent on discouraging him, she asked him who his favourite European fashion designers are and he quickly replied Armani and Chanel. She gave no reply and sent him on his way. After another month, she called him and asked why he chose those two designers and Ford replied saying that it is because she was wearing an Armani piece at the time. Taken by his smart answer, Hardwick hired him on the spot and he worked as her design assistant for two years before moving to Perry Ellis.
After two years at Perry Ellis, Ford got bored of American fashion. There were too many styles in America and they were too tacky to him. So, he moved to Italy and secured a place at Gucci fashion house. Thanks to Ford’s unmatched fashion prowess, he turned the struggling fashion house into a billion dollar firm in his time at Gucci.
Nonetheless, he didn’t see eye to eye with Maurizo Gucci. They both shared different fashion taste. But, he was an invaluable asset to the company. So, he was saved severally from being fired. The last straw that broke the camel’s back was a disagreement over the control of the group as Gucci started expanding its horizons.
Ford moved on from Gucci after fifteen years and started his own clothing brand two years later (2006 precisely). His expertise and determination spiked his brand to the top in no time.
Few years down the line, Ford stepped a little further from fashion and ventured into the movie industry. His debut movie A Single Man made waves, garnering a large audience and an Academy Award nomination for Best Actor and Spirit Award nomination for Best First Screenplay amongst others.
Earlier in 2016, Ford also made a huge success in the movie titled Nocturnal Animals. Amongst other awards, the movie won the Grand Jury Prize at the Venice Film Festival.
Besides his awards as a creative screenwriter and director, Ford has several other awards from his work at Gucci and at his Brand too.
In 2004, the acclaimed fashion designer got married to his age-long sweetheart, Richard Buckley, a fashion journalist, and they both have a son, Alexander John Jack Buckley Ford.