Elie Tahari at 40: Timeline

A journey to America leads to four decades on Seventh Avenue and a $500 million sportswear powerhouse.

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Elie Tahari moves from Israel to the U.S. and eventually gets work in New York’s Garment Center as an electrician’s assistant.

Tahari popularizes the tube top.

This story first appeared in the September 10, 2013 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

Begins designing namesake label Tahari.

• The designer opens his first boutique on Madison Avenue.

First fashion show at Studio 54.

Tahari is named one of Crain’s most successful 40 under 40.

First WWD front page.

Alan Grosman is named president of Tahari.

Tom Murry succeeds Alan Grosman as president.

• Tahari is admitted to the Council of Fashion Designers of America.

• The designer goes to the White House and meets with the Clintons.

Tahari moves into new digs in the Grace Building on West 42nd Street and initiates a major expansion campaign, including licensing, international sales and a fragrance.

Tahari teams with Andrew Rosen to launch Theory, a line of stretch sportswear that hits stores in February.

Mark Mendelson joins Tahari Ltd. as president of sales and marketing.

• The company signs a deal for leather and active outerwear with Synergy Sport International of Hong Kong, and for a line of hats with Forget-Me-Not Hats.

Tahari purchases 510 Fifth Avenue, which becomes the brand’s design center.

• Arthur S. Levine partners with the designer to form Tahari ASL, which includes the Tahari Arthur S. Levine brand of suits and dresses, as well as a private-label division.

Fabien Baron redesigns the logo as the company name changes to Elie Tahari.

Tahari sells his stake in Theory to Link International and Fast Retailing; Andrew Rosen retains his stake.

The company opens its first freestanding boutiques in New York’s SoHo neighborhood and Las Vegas.

A freestanding store bows in Atlanta, followed by Boston a year later.

The launch of the men’s wear collection and women’s accessories with shoes and belts.

• Tahari sues his former business partner Rosen and 10 other defendants in New York State Supreme Court in a dispute over the sale of Theory. Ultimately, the case was settled out of court.

The company opens its European headquarters in Milan, and a store in East Hampton, N.Y. In-store shops open at Saks Fifth Avenue in Beverly Hills and Bloomingdale’s in San Francisco.

• Women’s outerwear in partnership with S. Rothschild and the T Tahari line launch.

• Rory Tahari, creative director, is named vice chairman.

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Terry Richardson photographs the spring 2008 ad campaign with model Erin Wasson.

• Tahari holds its spring 2009 runway show at The Four Seasons Restaurant.

• A freestanding boutique opens in Boca Raton, Fla., and in-store shops bow in London and Russia.

• Tahari offers a limited-edition swimwear and caftan collection in collaboration with artist Kenny Scharf.

• Tahari designs a limited-edition bicycle with proceeds going to Matthew Modine’s charity Bicycle for a Day.

• The company opens in-store shops in Korea and Paris.

• Men’s dress shirts and ties are introduced in partnership with Phillips-Van Heusen.

• Tahari’s iPhone application for the fall collections makes its debut.

The designer holds a fall runway show for the first time at Bryant Park as part of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week.

• In-store shops open in Dubai and Mexico, and freestanding boutiques open in Istanbul and Newport Beach, Calif.

• Handbags launch at Bergdorf Goodman.

• A men’s suit collection is introduced in partnership with Peerless Clothing.

• Kobi Halperin is named executive creative director, succeeding Rory Tahari, who leaves the company.

• Freestanding boutiques open in Washington and Dallas, and expanded in-store shops open with Neiman Marcus in Dallas, and Bloomingdale’s in New York.

• E-commerce begins at

• T Tahari jewelry launches.

• Tahari collaborates with actress Emmy Rossum to create the Emmy Bag to benefit Safe Horizon, and the designer partners with Jennifer Hudson and Saks Fifth Avenue for Key to the Cure benefiting Women’s Cancer Research Fund.

• Tahari takes a stake in Catherine Malandrino to expand the brand with a diffusion line, new product categories and in international markets.

• Tahari is a guest judge on “Project Runway All Stars” Season 2.

• The designer is honored by Worldwide Orphans.

• Freestanding boutique opens in Qatar.

An eyewear collection and men’s furnishings are introduced.

• The company sells a majority stake in Catherine Malandrino to Bluestar Alliance.

• Sept. 4 is designated Elie Tahari Day by the City of New York, in recognition of the company’s 40th anniversary.

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