DIANE VON FURSTENBERG

Destined to a Greek Jewish mother who endured the holocaust and a Russian father, Diane Simone Michelle Halfin grew up in Brussels afore peregrinating to boarding school in Switzerland aged 12. She then went to Oxfordshire at the age of 15, and later on, studied Spanish at Madrid University in 1965.


A year later, she moved to the University of Geneva to pursue her studies with a specialization in Economics. There she met Prince Eduard Egon von und zu Furstenberg who she espoused in July 1969.

 

At her wedding ceremony, she wore her own-designed dress and the same year Von Furstenberg commenced an apprenticeship with Angelo Ferretti, by launching simple jersey dresses.


Peregrinating to New York, the couple had two kids, Prince Alexander and Princess Tatiana. With her new noble status, Von Furstenberg got slid into the fashion industry. Empowered by Dianna Vreeland, she put together an amassment of her dresses, exhibiting her first designs at the Gotham Hotel.

 

With her marriage failing, Von Furstenberg even became more determined and more financially independent. 

With the assistance of her companion Richard Conrad and financial support from her father she ultimately incorporated a Seventh Avenue showroom. It was the time when she designed and launched her iconic “wrap dress”.

The wrap dress became a huge success that in 1975 she was producing up to 15000 dresses per week. That time the dress became a kind of a part of cultural phenomenon and was even worn by Gloria Steinem, Betty Ford, and most of the suburban housewives.


The same year she dissevered from the prince and in 1983 ineluctably divorced him. Extended her business she included shades, shoes, adornments, and cosmetic lines in 1975 and her first fragrance was denominated after her daughter, Tatiana.


In 1985 she migrated to Paris to live with Alain Elkann, where she established a publishing house, named Salvy. In 1989 she returned back to the United States of America.

 

In 1991 she relinquished a book ‘Beds’, featuring bedrooms of celebrities and royals, and made a comeback with a revised edition of her “wrap dress”. In 1993 she released another book “The Bath” featuring the bathrooms’ styles of celebrities.


In 2001 Von Furstenberg espoused media tycoon Barry Diller, with whom she'd been romantically engaged on and off since the 1970s. The next year she turned into a naturalized U.S resident. In 2005, she got a “lifetime achievement award” from the Council of Fashion Designer of America. And in 2008 she emerged as a judge of Project Runway. Andre Leon Talley also curated a retrospective exhibition presentation entitled 'Diane Von Furstenberg: Journey of a Dress' at the Manezh in Moscow, in 2009.


In 2010 she was awarded a Gold Medal at the annual Queen Sofia Spanish Institute Gold Medal Gala and appeared as a guest judge on America’s Next Top Model in the same year.

"Wrap Dress", 2015, Model Kendall Jenner

Watch a trailer of Diane Von Furstenberg teaching how to build a fashion brand for masterclass.com

Watch Diane Von Furstenberg showing her design studio

Watch Diane Von Furstenberg's Fall/Winter 2015/2016 Fashion Show