A native of California, Rick Owens learned his craft during a two-year course in pattern making at Otis/Parsons before dropping out to work for sportswear and knockoff houses in L.A. In 1994 he began his own label, selling exclusively to Charles Gallay, a now defunct L.A. boutique that stocked Martin Margiela, Thierry Mugler, and Alaïa. In 1999, his line landed in Barneys, and by 2002 he had been recognized by the CFDA with a Perry Ellis Award for Emerging Talent. He moved to Paris the following year, when he was also appointed as the artistic director of Revillon, the long-established luxury fur company. Owens opened his first U.S. store in Tribeca in 2008.