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Dirk Bikkembergs was born in Bonn Germany, where his Flemish father was stationed at the time. After his high school career, Dirk Bikkembergs was interested to attend law school because he found "lawyers so chic" but eventually decided to start studying at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Belgium. In 1982 Bikkembergs graduated, together with other Belgian designers Ann Demeulemeester, Dries van Noten, Dirk van Saene, Walter van Beirendonck and Martin Margiela. Together they came to be known as the "Antwerp Six" by the fashion world.
In 1985, after winning the Canette d'Or award for Best Young Designer in Fashion, Dirk Bikkembergs was given the opportunity to create his own men's shoes collection. His first line featured perforated soles and highly original laces, creating an uproar at the time. Dirk also got himself noticed at the British Design Show in 1986.
In 1989 Dirk Bikkembergs went to Paris and launched his first menswear collection, followed by the women's collection in 1993.
The influence of Dirk Bikkembergs' origins is palpable in his designs. Many of his clothes betray a preference for military aesthetics. He loves robust materials and simple shapes. Other characteristics of his collections are the austere lines, the abundant use of leather and many virile details such as belts. Dirk's first women's collections were (apart from size) identical to his menswear lines.
To say Dirk Bikkembergs likes movement is an understatement. The tall designer divides his time between Belgium, France, Italy, Germany, London and New York and is rarely seen in any one place for more than a week. He describes himself as a workaholic and once said in an interview with ID magazine: "I am married to fashion and will remain faihthful."
Dirk Bikkembergs has become particularly popular with young people since 2000 after he launched his fashion line 'Bikkembergs Sport', including the t-shirts with the famous footballer. This so-called 'sport-couture' has given Bikkembergs the opportunity to design the clothing for the Inter Milan football club.
Designer Definition (from U.S Department of Labor)
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