Ralph Lauren could arguably be called the epitome of class, as far as the fashion world in concerned, and the man himself seems to wear as well as his signature clothing line does. In an interview with Oprah Winfrey during his appearance at the Lincoln Center in New York City this week, he talked about his career and some of his motivations; wanting to be a millionaire is only one of them.
The gala black-tie event was organized in aid of Lauren’s Center for Cancer Care and Prevention and Manhattan Performing Arts; it raised about $7 million from attendees and other contributors. The guest list included a lot of celebrities who got a sit-down dinner as well as a rare opportunity to hear Lauren’s observations about the fashion industry and make some comments of their
British-born actress Naomi Watts said she grew up following his fashions, and Prabal Gurung, a designer who is all the buzz (he has dressed both Oprah and Michelle Obama so far) said Lauren was an inspiration because of his determination to carry out his plans.
Oprah, in a red Lauren gown made specially for the occasion, told the audience that it took her 25 years to get an interview with the designer, but they have been ‘pals’ for many years. Oprah got her first interview last spring when she had Lauren on during the last week of her long-running television talk show.
Lauren spoke briefly about his own role models, saying that Frank Sinatra inspired him as a person who never let a little adversity get him down. As for himself, the 72-year-old Lauren noted that he comes from ‘humble’ beginnings, having grown up in the Bronx and never attended design school. He just knew what he wanted and had the talent and perseverance to go after and attain his goals.