Born in Manhattan, Omar attended Parson’s School of Design for two years before transferring to The Fashion Institute of Technology where he graduated with an Associate degree in Fashion Design and a Bachelor of Arts in Fashion Design and Merchandising. Turning down offers from such fashion companies as The Limited, Generra Clothing, Liz Claiborne and Intertex (Jordache Jeans) he had his sights set on a more exclusive market, in hopes of owning his own label some day. In 1998 months after graduating from FIT, Omar was offered a design position for Marc O’Polo / Mac Mode in Munich, Germany. It was one of the toughest challenges he ever faced, living and working in a foreign land and in a foreign language. Omar persevered, gaining recognition with his first collection from the European fashion industry as well as trade and trend forecast publications. Omar opted to not sign another three year contract with Mac Mode. Since then, Omar has worked for several high profile companies such as Calvin Klein, Carolina Herrera and 5 years at Ralph Lauren. And then a short period at Bill Blass before Omar set out to start on his own collection for the spring of 2006.
OMAR YAPOR LLC began operating in the summer of 2006. Taking on this huge challenge both creatively and financially, Omar created his first collection for spring/ summer 2008. The collection showed during New York fashion week of 2007, to great reviews and positive feedback from buyers.
Omar presented another collection for the spring of 2009, which showed during fashion week of 2008.
He sold his collection in boutiques in and around New York.
Unfortunately the economic crisis also showed up in September of 2008. With Omar’s investors and financial backing dissolved he used the rest of his own personal capital to finish his Spring 2010 Collection in the hopes that the economic crisis would improve quickly. Unfortunately the length of the economic crisis was unexpected and many of the retailers that carried the Omar Yapor line had closed.
Putting all of his emotional, physical, financial and intellectual energy into trying to make his label a success, the company could not survive these bad economic times.
The label “Omar Yapor” closed early 2011.
Though Omar was beaten he was not broken, he began developing skills in other areas of the apparel industry such as Textile Design, Tech Design, Graphic Design and Branding / Merchandising.
He participated in a reality design competition show “24 hour Catwalk” which aired in the beginning of 2012.
Omar is the type of individual that is always up for a challenge, given the opportunity. Omar took on the challenge of working as wardrobe consultant in early 2014 for a referral web portal. He was awarded one of the BEST of 2015, BEST of 2016 and a TOP fashion professional in the New York Area by Thumbtack.com and his previous clients.
Always trying to challenge his abilities, Omar became a contributing writer and part of the fashion and lifestyle dream team for Manhattan Digest Magazine. Omar frequently contributes his style and fashion picks for the “On Your Grind” style series.
Omar will always continue to move forward and take on new challenges. He will always be grounded to women’s design and RTW.
Omar Yapor is currently living and working in New York and is always looking for the next opportunity or experience.
What should everyone know about you?
OY: I am a highly versatile designer with a diverse skill set in many aspects of fashion and clothing design and production. I frequently challenge myself and my abilities to fine tune my talents. I am constantly striving to better my craft and my abilities.
How would you describe what you do?
OY: I research the industry, I research the trends, I research fabrics & colors all the while I am thinking about concepts and ideas for the next collection. Then it’s just a matter of putting pencil to paper and developing a line taking into account all the information I have collected.
Why did you choose to be a designer?
OY: I ask myself that same question. Lol But to give you an answer: I love coming up with new or different ideas that make an impact either visually or functionally.
What steps did you take to become a designer?
OY: My first step was to educate myself and go to the best fashion schools.
Best/Most Challenging part of your job?
OY: 1. To consistently predict trends to interpret and design them for a certain market in order to drive sales. 2. To get overseas production companies to minimize their mistakes on prototypes
If you weren’t a designer what would you be?
OY: Hard to answer since I pride myself on having a diverse set of skills. But I can narrow it down to a Chef, Actor, Writer or possible in finance because the lure of that money is hard to dismiss..lol
How did you get started in design?
OY: I started a surfwear line when I was in High School. It began with graphic tees, but then move up to board shorts, rash guards and bathing suits.
What do you like about what you do?
OY: I love the creative process of it. Seeing a concept evolve from a thought in my mind to a finished garment or collection.
What’s a common misconception people have about what you do?
OY: That it is all glamour and fashion parties. Also that the apparel industry is easy and it’s just about sketching ideas and looking at fabrics. There is an incredible amount of work that goes into a finished garment that fits well.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
OY: I hope to be a design director or the CEO of my own company.
What sparked your interest in design?
OY: I have always been visually creative person with a talent to sketch and visualize ideas.
How has your work evolved since you began your career?
OY: My work has become more refined and sophisticated. I feel this is because as a designer one can take cues from one’s past experiences when designing a piece or collection.
Are there any types of clothing/footwear/accessories that you avoid wearing?
OY: I try to avoid wearing articles of clothing or accessories that as a whole look overly trendy or contrived. I think making subtle trend statements with my clothing or accessories.
What are you fascinated by at the moment and how does it feed into your work?
OY: I am fascinated by high tech and nano technology fabrics. I am at the moment thinking how I can incorporate these elements into a high end ready to wear line.
What is the biggest lesson that you have learned since you started your career?
OY: To not expect or count on things that haven’t happened yet and always be prepared for the worst. And first and foremost be true to yourself and look out for you and your interests first, because no one else will.
What advice would you give to young designers?
OY: To prepared for a very tough industry and always try to elevate your skill set.
What would you like to achieve before the end of the year?
OY: There are several personal projects that I am working on and would like to complete and try to make them come to fruition before the year ends.
Are you superstitious or do you have any rules you live by?
OY: To stay and be fearless. To always challenge myself, so I stay confident about my abilities and talent. To stay constantly informed about the industry and what is happening in the world around me, because this always affects trends and fashion.
What’s your motto?
OY: To always give it the best that I can, so there are no regrets or disappointments.
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