In today's fashion world, there are many designers who have revolutionized clothing or become famous for their outrageous ideas, but there are also those who create things suitable for ordinary people and everyday life. Among these designers there are also the creators of things-icons, must-have clothes for any fashionista. Among these fashion designers, Diana von Furstenberg and her wrap dress certainly stand out.
Family and childhood
Diana, whose last name was Halfin before her marriage, was born in Brussels in 1946. Her mother and aunt went through Auschwitz, and the story of their acquaintance is worthy of special mention. In 1930, after the beginning of the persecution of the Jews, Sima Vaisman and her cousin Leon left their home in Chisinau. In 42, Sima is arrested and sent to Auschwitz, where she meets a girl named Lily. A friendship develops between them, despite which Lily did not tell her new friend that a few days before her arrest, she married her lover. SoonLily is transferred to another camp and the girls do not even think that they will ever meet. Surprisingly, both managed to survive, and when Sima came to her brother Leon after the end of the war, she met Lily there. It was her brother who married her friend in the concentration camp a few days before her arrest.
Sima and Lily, of course, recognized each other, but did not say a word about their common past in Auschwitz. Only years later, Sima will describe this story in his memoirs. And Lily, who returned from the camp exhausted to an extreme degree, was diagnosed with infertility. Despite this, Lily and Leon were able to become parents, and in 46 they had a daughter, Diana.
Diana's father after the war was able to start a business selling electrical goods in Brussels, on which he managed to make a good fortune. When her daughter was 13, Leon and Lily divorced, and Diana went to a boarding school. Throughout her teenage years, she moves from one European school to another, until finally she stays in Switzerland with her mother, where she receives an economic education.
Meet your future husband
At the age of 18, in one of the trendy clubs, Diana meets a young guy with whom she begins an affair. This guy was Eduard von Furstenberg, none other than the son of an Austrian prince. Edward and Diana travel a lot together, but a year later the girl leaves her lover and leaves for Paris. There, thanks to her work in a photo studio, she gets acquainted with the world of high fashion and decides to move to America. In addition, Edward studied in the States, and mixed feelings remained for him. Diana andjealous and bored. Their chance meeting in St. Moritz and Edward's invitation to him in New York make the girl live in two cities.
At this time, Diana becomes even closer to the world of fashion - she already works in the textile manufactory of Angelo Feretti and begins to make the first sketches of future dresses. She already then understands that her vocation is clothing. Diane von Furstenberg soon finds out that she is in a position and is going to terminate the pregnancy. I must say that in 69 this was done as quickly and simply as in our time. But Diana's mother persuaded her to tell the child's father first. From Furstenberg, she received a telegram with the words "the date of the wedding is July 15." She is said to have kept the message to this day.
Marriage and having children
Pregnant with her first child, Diana is torn apart - on the one hand, the dream of moving to New York comes true, on the other, she is sorry to leave her teacher Angelo Feretti.
The wedding of Diana and Edward took place near Paris. The bride wore a white Dior dress and a wide-brimmed hat. So Diana Halfin becomes a princess and an aristocrat. In the 70th year, her son Alexander was born, and after 3 months she was again pregnant with her daughter Tatyana. Children did not affect the bohemian lifestyle of the spouses. They still attend parties, receptions and dinner parties. Diana is active in the fashion world and is friends with Andy Warhol, Valentino, fashion editors.
Three years after the wedding, the couple divorced. Despite the obvious problems in marriage - her work and popularity, hisbetrayals and revelry - they get divorced easily and smoothly. Diana does not ask for alimony, leaves his last name and, moreover, the ex-husband and wife will be able to maintain friendship.
Years later, Diana married again, to billionaire Barry Diller. In the 70s they had an affair, then they broke up, and in 2001 they met again and got married. The couple is still together. According to Diana herself, in the 70s they were too young, and now Barry is the perfect husband.
Diana began her first steps in the fashion world before her marriage to Eduard, when she worked for Feretti. He allowed her to use fabrics from his manufactory, from which the girl sewed outfits. Before leaving for America, the pregnant Diana came to the factory at night and sewed from what was available. She took several ready-made outfits to the States, where she showed it to the editor-in-chief of Vogue magazine. She liked the models and she actually launched the fashion brand "Diana von Furstenberg". The dresses created by the novice designer got the right to enter the world of big fashion. Having an initial capital of 30 thousand dollars (and Diana never wanted to depend on a rich spouse), she founded her clothing label in 1970.
From the very beginning, she headed for a women's suit that will make absolutely anyone attractive. This is the philosophy of the brand - to create things that adorn any figure. By the way, Diana from the very beginning abandoned her thoughts about men's clothing and until now the brand is aimed only at clothes for women. True, over time in itaccessories, shoes and bags appeared.
Diana von Furstenberg is the first success of a fashion brand
Already the first collections of the fashion house have become incredibly successful, and all thanks to the wrap dress. This is the idea of Diana herself, who wanted to create the perfect dress not for the goddess of the catwalk or the red carpet, but for an ordinary woman who goes to work, walks with children, goes to the store. At the same time, she wanted to make this woman attractive. Looking at the covers of fashion magazines with shapeless, asexual outfits of the 70s and hippie-style hoodies, the aspiring designer got it into her head that she needed a dress that was feminine and sexy, and so the Diane von Furstenberg wrap dress became.
The designer herself called his style “a piece of fabric with sleeves”. In fact, this is a dress with ties without zippers and buttons, cut like a bathrobe. But everyone liked its advantages - it is easy to put on, does not wrinkle, suitable for any occasion, and most importantly, the hourglass silhouette, pulled at the waist with a thin belt, adorns any figure. 1975 was declared the year of the Vogue wrap dress. This style is called wrap dress in English and one by Diane Von Furstenberg is kept in the Met Museum of Costume.
By the way, during this period, Diana von Furstenberg herself acts as the main model and face of her brand. Photos in magazines, advertising billboards show the designer himself in his own creations, which suited her incredibly.
Disappointment in fashion and a new rise
Despitethe wild success of the brand and huge dividends from the sale of a patent for a wrap dress, in the second half of the 80s the popularity of the brand falls. Diana, experiencing a creative crisis, decides to leave fashion. A financial crisis is also superimposed - clothes are not sold, stores are forced to reduce prices to a minimum. At one of the parties, she meets the writer Alain Elkann and moves with him to Paris, where she works in the publishing business. It took her 5 years to realize that Alain was cheating on her and to miss her favorite job. But in 1990 New York, few people remember who Diane von Furstenberg was.
It helps to return to the ranks of famous designers with a new idea - Silk Assets, a silk hoodie. It instantly became popular and revived the love for the wrap dress, which is now bought at flea markets and vintage stores. Did not prevent her from climbing the fashionable Olympus again and the cancer of the tongue, which Diana successfully overcame.
In the 2000s, the brand not only creates a new collection for each season. Diana von Furstenberg launches a line of jewelry and shoes. More than 30 mono-brand boutiques are open around the world, and in general, her outfits can be bought in 70 countries around the world. Many famous ladies are loyal fans of the brand. This is Michelle Obama, and Fergie, and Jennifer Lopez, and many others.
As von Furstenberg herself says, she, of course, was beautiful and rich, and even a princess, which opened many doors for her and helpedbecome successful. But there were many of the same rich and beautiful around, but not every one of them was able to achieve such results. In addition, the brand is a great example of how a legend from the past can become the main trend of today.
Love for Russia
Diana is connected with Russia by a lifelong love. Her father was born in Chisinau and when Diana was little, he spoke Russian to her, read the classics to her and instilled in her a love for Russian art. In an interview, the fashion designer always says that her dad loved her very much and therefore she associates Russian speech with love.
She named her children by Russian names: Tatyana in honor of Tatyana Yakovleva, Mayakovsky's friend, and Alexander in honor of her husband Yakovleva. Diana knew and was friends with them in her youth.
The love for Russia, which Diana von Furstenberg carried through her whole life, is also embodied in her work. The Winter Palace collection dedicated to War and Peace and Doctor Zhivago is an example of inspiration from Russian history and literature. Diana von Furstenberg's costume exhibitions have been held in Moscow more than once, and she herself even gave a lecture to students of Moscow State University, where she talked about the formation of her brand.
- In 1976, the designer enters the Guinness Book of Records as a fashion designer who sold more than 5 million of his dresses in one year.
- Diane Von Furstenberg brand creates not only feminine dresses, for example, in 2003 a sports line was releasedfor Reebok brand.
- And in 2012, the designer came up with limited-edition bottles for Coca-Cola.
- Diana von Furstenberg was a young model for one of Andy Warhol's works.
- Diana once donated half of her considerable fortune as part of a charity campaign.