Zac Posen

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Zac Posen
Zac Posen at Met Opera.jpg
Posen at the Metropolitan Opera opening, September 22, 2008
Born Zachary E. Posen[1]
(1980-10-24) October 24, 1980 (age 35)
New York City
Nationality American
Education Parson's School of Design and Central Saint Martin
Occupation Fashion designer
Partner(s) Christopher Niquet (2008–present)
Awards CFDA: Swarovski's Perry Ellis Award for Womenswear (2004)
Labels Zac Posen

Zachary E. "Zac" Posen (/zæk ˈpzən/; born October 24, 1980) is an American fashion designer.

Early life[edit]

Posen was born and raised to a Jewish family[2] in New York City, residing in the SoHo neighborhood of lower Manhattan. He is the son of Susan (née Orzack), a corporate lawyer, and Stephen Posen, an artist.[3][4] His interest in fashion design started early, and as a child he would steal yarmulkes from his grandparents' synagogue to make ball dresses for dolls.

He attended Saint Ann's School, a private school in Brooklyn and in his sophomore year interned with fashion designer Nicole Miller.[5] At age 16 he enrolled in the pre-college program at Parsons The New School for Design.[6] He graduated from Saint Ann's in 1999. For three years, Posen was mentored by curator Richard Martin at The Costume Institute of The Metropolitan Museum of Art. At age 18, he was accepted into the womenswear degree program at London's Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design at the University of the Arts London. In 2001, Posen constructed a gown entirely made from thin leather strips and dressmaker hooks and eyes[7] that was displayed by the Victoria and Albert Museum and featured in their "Curvaceous" exhibition.


In 2000, Posen received a big break after a dress he made for Naomi Campbell changed hands several times among several fashion insiders, including actress Paz de la Huerta.[7] He is famously well-connected and has called Stella Schnabel his muse.[8] Through Interview magazine Editor-in-Chief Ingrid Sischy, Posen met his future publicist and event producer Ed Filipowski of KCD, who offered to represent him for free.[8]

Upon returning to New York in 2001, Posen set up an atelier in his parents' living room, while they gave him a USD$15 allowance.[8] In October of the same year, he was chosen to present a capsule collection as part of GenArt's Fresh Faces in Fashion New York 2001. He received a grant for USD$20,000.[6] After his first runway show in 2001, Posen was courted by fashion titans Yves Carcelle (President of LVMH Fashion Group), Sidney Toledano (Chief Executive Officer and Director of Christian Dior S.A.), and Domenico De Sole (President and Chief Executive Officer of Gucci Group NV.)[9] Following the success of this presentation, Posen established his design studio in Tribeca. Zac Posen continues to receive awards and accolades, most notably the Council of Fashion Designers of America's 2004 Swarovski's Perry Ellis Award for Womenswear.[10] Posen's strong, feminine aesthetic has become a favorite of style leaders including Natalie Portman, Rihanna, Amanda Seyfried, Kate Winslet, Claire Danes, Cameron Diaz, Jennifer Lopez, Mischa Barton, Beyoncé Knowles and many more.

In 2004, high-end urban fashion brand Sean John made an investment deal with Posen.[11] Ashley Olsen interned with Posen in 2005 while a student at The Gallatin School of Individualized Study, an undergraduate college within New York University.[12]

In April 2008, Posen's capsule collection created in collaboration with Target, Zac Posen for Target, was released in 75 stores in Australia.[13] A preview of the collection was shown during March's L'Oreal Melbourne Fashion Festival as one of the fashion week's headline catwalks.

At the 2012 Academy Awards, Glenn Close wore a Zac Posen gown on the red carpet, as did both Reese Witherspoon and Naomi Watts at the 2013 Golden Globe Awards.[14] Other notables who have worn Posen creations on red carpets include Uma Thurman (2013 Met Ball), Sofia Vergara (2014 Golden Globes), Anna Chlumsky (2014 Emmy Awards) and Rita Ora (2014 AMA Awards).[15]

On December 18, 2012, Posen was announced as official judge of Project Runway Season 11 which started on January 24, 2013 on Lifetime Television.[16]

In February 2014, Posen partnered with another major retailer, David's Bridal, to create Truly Zac Posen, a line of affordable bridal gowns.[17] The line was Posen's first official bridal collection.[18] Also in 2014, he was named Creative Director for Brooks Brothers, tapped to modernize their signature women's clothing and accessories line.[19] In 2014, he introduced a more casual Pre-Fall 2015 Trunk Show collection.[20]

Personal life[edit]

Posen lives in the New York neighborhood of SoHo with his boyfriend Christopher Niquet and their three dogs. Posen is of Jewish descent, with immigrant ancestors from Russia, Poland, and Romania.[21]


  1. ^ Stuttgarter Zeitung, Stuttgart, Germany. "Aktuelle Nachrichten – Stuttgarter Zeitung" (in German). Retrieved September 9, 2013. 
  2. ^ Jewish Virtual Library - Jewish Biographies -Fashion Icons: "Kenneth Cole" retrieved September 7, 2015
  3. ^ "Chappell Confidential: Zac Posen Celebrates The Holidays". December 28, 2011. Retrieved September 9, 2013. 
  4. ^ "Deaths ORZACK, EVERETT D.". May 4, 1999. Retrieved September 9, 2013. 
  5. ^ Spiegel, Richard (January 27, 2002). "Zac to the future.". Lucire. Retrieved January 8, 2007. 
  6. ^ a b Tauber, Michelle; Paley, Rebecca (September 15, 2003). "SEW COOL" 60 (11). People. pp. 153–154. 
  7. ^ a b Trebay, Guy (February 12, 2002). "FASHION DIARY; At 21, a Grasp Of Women's Clout". The New York Times. p. 151. (52027):B8 
  8. ^ a b c Luscombe, Belinda; Nugent, Benjamin (30 September 2002). "Boy in Vogue". Time (magazine) 160 (14): 78. Retrieved 25 May 2014. 
  9. ^ Trebay, Guy (18 September 2002). "The Rise and Rise of a Prodigy". The New York Times 152 (52245): B9. Retrieved 25 May 2014. 
  10. ^ CFDA Past Winners
  11. ^ Agins, Teri (20 April 2004). "Mainstreaming Hip-Hop: Combs's Sean John Sets Move Into Women's High Fashion With Big Stake in Zac Posen". The Wall Street Journal 243 (77): B1–B3. Retrieved 25 May 2014. 
  12. ^ "Working Women". People 63 (11): 83. 21 March 2005. 
  13. ^ Zac Posen for Target Australia, March 13, 2008
  14. ^ "Oscars 2012: Stars arrive". BBC News. February 27, 2012. 
  15. ^ Rita Ora - Red Carpet 24/7 - Us Weekly
  16. ^ Project Runway. "Facebook Timeline Photo". The rumors are true! Click "Like" to help us welcome featured judge Zac Posen to "Project Runway" Season 11 
  17. ^ "Zac Posen Unveils Wedding Dress Line for David's Bridal". Huffington Post. February 2, 2014. 
  18. ^ "Zac posen fancy suits". Retrieved 2015-02-19. 
  19. ^ "Zac Posen to serve as a creative director at Brooks Brothers". New York Post. June 29, 2014. Retrieved December 2, 2014. 
  20. ^ Zac Posen Pre Fall 2015 | Moda Operandi
  21. ^ Zac Posen Biography - family, childhood, parents, name, school, mother, young, old, information, born

External links[edit]