Who started it? Tory Burch (nee Robinson) was born on June 17, 1966, in Valley Forge, Pennsylvania. After graduating with a degree in art history from the University of Pennsylvania, Burch (right) got a job assisting fashion designer Zoran in New York City. She then became an assistant fashion editor at Harper's Bazaar and did PR work for labels such as Ralph Lauren, Vera Wang and Loewe in New York. In 1996, she married venture capitalist Chris Burch and temporarily retired. However, Burch launched her eponymous label of clothing, accessories, jewellery and small home furnishings in February 2004 with the opening of a boutique in Nolita, Manhattan. She recruited a small staff of designers and got help from her friend Fiona Kotur, a Hong Kong-based accessories designer. Her brand of chic resort wear and accessories was a big hit - on the day her boutique opened it sold out of its entire inventory. Her brand became a household name when Oprah Winfrey wore a Tory Burch tunic on the cover of O Magazine the following year. The talk show host also invited Burch on to her show where she showed her collection. Her appearance boosted the profile of her label so much the brand's website received eight million hits afterwards. In 2005, Burch won the Fashion Group International Rising Star award for best new retail concept. Tory Burch has six boutiques in the US and her merchandise is sold by department stores such as Bergdorf Goodman, Saks Fifth Avenue and Neiman Marcus in the US, Harvey Nichols and Selfridges in London, and Lane Crawford in Hong Kong. The look Scouring her parent's vintage designer wardrobes for inspiration, Burch's line of chic sportswear for women has a distinctive 1960s and 70s influence. Mixing bohemian and ethnic prints in bright colours, Burch creates easy-to-wear separates such as elegant tunics, oversized cardigans, luxurious polo shirts and breezy trousers with more elegant pieces such as bejewelled shift dresses and sequinned cocktail numbers. She says photography, art, film and the work of interior designer David Hicks are major influences on her work. Her latest collection, inspired by French celebrities such as Francoise Hardy, Jane Birkin and Catherine Deneuve, mixes feminine clothing with masculine details. Look for a colour palette of neutral tones with bright red, mustard yellow, purple and teal in floral and geometric prints. This season, she used materials such as metallic and patent leather as well as animal prints in pieces such as oversized totes and ballet flats bearing her trademark double 'T' logo. Who wears it? Uma Thurman, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Hilary Swank. Fun fact Burch dated cycling champion Lance Armstrong after her divorce from Chris Burch, although the pair have reportedly broken up. Where can I buy it? Tory Burch is available in Hong Kong at Lane Crawford in the IFC Mall, Central, tel: 2118 3388; and at 3 Canton Road, TST, tel: 2118 3428.