Cynthia Rowley was born in 1965 in Barrington, Illinois, USA.
She was married to Tom Sullivan in 1988, Sculptor Bill Keenan in 1996, and is currently married to Bill Powers (2005). She has two children, Gigi Clementine Powers (born 2005) and Kit Clementine (born 1999).
After her graduation in 1983, she moved to New York and sold her senior project, an 8-piece collection to the up-market stores, and made a nice profit which enabled her to get going.
A buyer from Marshall Field saw her on the train, and asked her who made the outfit she was wearing. When she said she had made it herself, Marshall Fields ordered from her, and she was able to meet their requirements.
Her classic lady-like clothes have grown to over $ 12 million per year. She has a large impressive showroom in a building with neighbours like Ralph Lauren and Donna Karan. Her chic store is in Soho and there are plans for many other stores.
Cynthia’s creative endeavours have proven to be award winning. The council of Fashion Designers of America CFDA honored her with the prestigious New Fashion Talent Award. The CFDA recognized Cynthia again three seasons after introducing a complete menswear line with a nomination for the Perry Ellis Award for New Menswear Design Talent.
In 1999, Cynthia and her best friend, Ilene Rosenzweig, the former deputy style editor for The New York Times, co-authored the best-selling book, Swell: A Girl’s guide to the Good Life. The highly anticipated sequel, Home Swell Home, was released in 2002 and was followed by Swell Holiday in 2003. The next book in the series, an entertaining guide, The Swell Dressed Party, Spring 2005. Swell’s popularity has brought many exciting spin-offs; a monthly column in glamour, engagement calendars, mini-books, swell-related television programs and products for home. The success of swellco has spawned house wares and lifestyle books and a license deal with Tarrant Apparel for the design, production, and distribution of jeans, paper goods and housewares.
Cynthia has many hidden talents, including the art prime-time television commercials. In her free time she enjoys many death-defying adventures, from skydiving to trapeze performances to surfing. She is a fan of contemporary art and an avid art collector.
Cynthia Rowley, the namesake company, is owned by Cynthia Rowley, the designer.
Cynthia gave birth in January 2005 to a little girl named Gigi Clementine Powers just before she will be showing at the New York Fashion Week. Good timing. She already has a daughter Kit. She however, is only marrying her long-time partner Bill Powers, in September 2005. Better late than never.
The New York store FAO Schwatz had an unveiling of the new Rowley Barbie Doll in March 2005, and Cynthia was delighted to be recreated in plastic. She said she had loved Barbie since she was very small. She arrived with her two daughters Kit and Gigi to celebrate the new doll.
Her Cynthia Rowley Collection include menswear, jeans, shoes, eyewear, hosiery, umbrellas, handbags, small leather goods and a signature fragrance. There are Cynthia Rowley Boutiques in New York City, Los Angeles, East Hampton, New York, and Chicago, in Bloomingdale's department stores, and in retail stores in Japan. The collection is also represented in better department and specialty stores both domestically and internationally.