Pierre Cardin was born in northern Italy and during World War I they left Italy and settled in Saint-Étienne, France in 1924. Pierre began his career by making dresses and in 1945 he moved to Paris. He studied architecture and worked with the fashion house of Paquin after World War II until he began working for Schiaparelli. Then he became the head of Dior in 1947 before opening his namesake in 1950. First designing costumes and clothing which began to sell well in his first boutique he opened in 1951. By 1957 he began traveling to Japan to develop the fashion market there. His business grew in fashion through the 1960's and 1970's including some notable developments such as designing the first NASA space suits. By 1975 he began designing other things besides clothing such as furniture and eventually found his way to jewelry. Cartier even awarded him the Golden Thimble by French haute couture three times.