By  on November 18, 2008

NEW YORK — Charlize Theron’s advice for young designers? “Stay true to yourself,” the actress said at Monday’s CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund dinner. “As with any form of the arts, that’s the most important thing.”

Theron could have been describing her friend John Galliano, whom she later introduced onstage. He gave an inspiring and extensive speech about his career, from his childhood in Gibraltar to his work as a dresser at London’s National Theater, studying at Central Saint Martins and, fresh out of school, landing his first retail account with Browns and his first customer in Diana Ross. Galliano recalled his struggles to build a business, staging a show at Sao Schlumberger’s Hotel Particulier with the help of Anna Wintour and André Leon Talley, and his path to designing Givenchy, and finally, reinventing and rejuvenating the house of Dior.

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