“Great is the art of beginning, but greater is the art of ending.” ~ Lazurus Long
Oscar de la Renta waves goodbye at the finale of his Spring 2013 RTW show – Photo credit: Life & Style Magazine
The world is grieving the loss of a truly supreme being in the fashion community. Iconic designer, Oscar de la Renta, has died at the age of 82 from complications of cancer, at his home in Connecticut. One of the masters of red carpet glamour, Mr. de la Renta’s stunning garments have been worn by the who’s who in society and entertainment, and is the go-to designer for starlets and hollywood moms alike, from Sarah Jessica Parker to Oprah Winfrey. As many have said, the Oscar’s wouldn’t be the same without Oscar (de la Renta).
Amal Alamuddin Photo Credit: Annie Leibovitz for VOGUE
Sarah Jessica Parker – Met Gala 2014
Oscar de la Renta with Oprah Winfrey – Met Gala 2010
Jessica Alba – Golden Globes 2013
Amy Adams stunning in Oscar de la Renta at the 2013 Academy Awards
Ciara – American Music Awards 2013
Throughout the decades, Oscar de la Renta has been one of the most worn and trusted designers by some of the world’s most powerful women. During his career, he has dressed every U.S. First lady from Jackie O to Laura Bush. Earlier this year, many former first ladies celebrated 50 years of Oscar de la Renta fashion at an exhibit in his honor at the George W. Bush Center in Dallas, TX.
Oscar de la Renta Five Decades of Style exhibit – Photo by Terri Glanger for the George W. Bush Presidential Center
Former First Lady Laura Bush flawless on the White House front lawn
Former First Lady Hillary Clinton with Oscar de la Renta
Former First Lady and fashion icon, Jacqueline Onassis Kennedy
Despite his criticism of First Lady Michelle Obama showing adequate support for American designers, sketching designs for the first family, but never having one of his creations chosen, merely 10 days prior to his death, FLOTUS finally stepped out in an Oscar de la Renta cocktail dress at this year’s Fashion Eduction Workshop at the White House.
FLOTUS Michelle Obama at the podium in an Oscar de la Renta dress from the Fall 2014 collection
Michelle Obama Inauguration sketch submission by Oscar de la Renta
Known for his passion and impeccable charm , if you looked up the definition of “suave”, you might just find a picture of Oscar de la Renta. Born in the Dominican Republic, Mr. de la Renta studied in Spain and worked his way up in fashion at acclaimed houses including Balenciaga, Lanvin, and Elizabeth Arden, before launching his eponymous label in the late 60’s. From designing the wedding dress for automobile heiress Anne Ford, to becoming president of the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA), and even redesigning the Boy Scouts uniforms in 1980, Oscar de la Renta became one of the most beloved people in American fashion.
Mr. de la Renta at the Coty American Fashion Critics’ Awards. Photo credit: Arthur Brower/The New York Times
Tale of two Oscars – celebrating 40 years of Sesame Street with Harper’s Bazaar
What will be missed the most, maybe even more than his fashion, is Oscar de la Renta’s love for women and his unyielding support for true feminism. Some could argue, that he was one of the greatest male feminists of this era. Oscar de la Renta’s vision of women far exceeded outward beauty and making women look amazingly marvelous in his unforgettable frocks. He was driven by the inner beauty and strength of a woman, and motivated by not only making women look glamorous, but having women feel empowered in all facets of their femininity. In a September 2013 interview with E!, Mr. de la Renta states: “it is the empowerment of a women that we are celebrating”.
His, is a name our grandmothers, mothers, and now daughters, have equated with the most elegant moments of being a woman.
His, is a name our grandmothers, mothers, and now daughters, have equated with the most elegant moments of being a woman, and the power and grace of women in history over the past five decades. Oscar de la Renta will not only be missed for his extraordinary fashions, but he will be deeply missed for his passion, charisma, love of song, and his sincere joie de vivre.
May he rest in power…
Photo credits: Getty Images