Princess Diane von Design
Diane von Furstenberg sold millions of her famous dresses, saw what bankruptcy means but rebounded by selling clothes on TV and returned again with her own luxury line. Today the new generation of celebrities are discovering her clothes, and she's opening a store after store.
Diane Simone Michelle Halfin was born in Brussels, Belgium, and at the university she met Prince Egon of Fürstenberg. Miss Diane became Princess Diane, but the marriage didn't last and Diane von Fürstenberg had dropped her title and headed for the new life.
Ms. von Furstenberg first arrived in the fashion world in 1972 with her iconic wrap dress, the seed of what is today a full fashion house. By 1976, Diane had sold millions of her dresses, coming to symbolize female power and freedom to an entire generation. In 1997, after a hiatus from fashion, Ms. von Furstenberg re-emerged on the New York fashion scene with the re-launch of the dress that had started it all and began transforming her company into the global luxury lifestyle brand it is today.
In 2005, Ms. von Furstenberg was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) for her impact on fashion, and one year later, was elected the CFDA's new president, an office she continues to hold. A firm believer in the power of women, she sits on the board of Vital Voices, a women's leadership organization that empowers emerging women leaders and social entrepreneurs around the world. Her words “There’s no weak woman” became legendary.
Headquartered in New York City, there are currently 29 freestanding Diane von Furstenberg boutiques worldwide in major cities including New York, Los Angeles, Miami, London, Paris, Moscow, Hong Kong, Jakarta and Tokyo. DVF collections are also sold in select retail specialty stores in more than 56 countries. ■