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‘Wrap dress’, ‘empowerment’, ‘philanthropy’: over the years these three phrases have become synonymous with fashion icon Diane von Furstenberg.  Entering the industry in 1970, DVF has made great strides in establishing herself and her luxury brand in the world of couture, and her collection at this year’s New York Fashion week was no exception to what has become a long legacy of successful styling.

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In 1974, Diane von Furstenberg created the wrap dress and sold over a million in the first two years.  Her company, a global luxury lifestyle brand, has expanded over the years to a full collection of ready-to-wear clothing and accessories such as jewelry, handbags, and shoes.  With 132 DVF stores, she has made quite the name for herself.  In 2005, Von Furstenberg received the coveted and highly prized Lifetime Achievement Award from the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) further securing her place in fashion history.

In addition to her design and retail success, over the course of her career DVF has committed herself to empowering women.  ‘The first advice I give anybody is that the most important relationship in life is the one you have with yourself.  And therefore you have to be very true to yourself, demanding on yourself, hard on yourself,’ she told People.  She continued, saying, ‘I am a feminist, and…I really want every woman to be strong and know that she can be the woman she wants to be.’  DVF acts as a role model for girls around the world.  She has proven that with hard work and commitment, you can accomplish anything – even building your own fashion empire.

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The impact Diane von Furstenberg has made will have greater staying power than any item of clothing ever has, and that’s something to truly idolize and admire.

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As an entrepreneur, Diane von Furstenberg spends some of her time working with Vital Voices, an organization that supports female entrepreneurs and leaders around the world.  In addition, she and her husband created Diller-von Furstenberg Family Foundation and the DVF Award.  This award gives grants to women ‘who have had the courage to fight the power, to survive, and the leadership to inspire – Women who have transformed the lives of others through their commitment, resources and visibility.’

While her classic looks have staying power, von Furstenberg does a beautiful job switching things up when it comes to presenting her latest collections.  This past New York Fashion Week was no exception as she showcased her Fall/Winter ready-to-wear at the House of DVF.  The evening was unconventional – supermodels had a dance party rather than walk the catwalk.  Vogue says, ‘the world’s biggest models – Gigi Hadid, Karlie Kloss, Kendall Jenner, Jourdan Dunn, etc. were dancing to disco music as the designer clapped along and occasionally was persuaded to join them.  The platform they were boogying on was surrounded by easily a hundred camera phone–wielding guests.’  As the show took place on Valentine’s Day, the set consisted of an adorable lip couch and makeup mirror.  The idea behind the evening seemed to be celebrating life and celebrating one another as women.  Lily Aldridge told E! News, ‘It was a really special night.  I have to say it was one of the most special memories because it was so different for us and it was really nice.’

DVF will be remembered for far more than her wrap dress— her signature piece that launched her fashion legacy.  Her passion, efforts towards empowerment, and kind heart will long outlive her physical contributions to the world of fashion.  The impact she has made along the way to greatness will have greater staying power than any item of clothing ever has, and that’s something to truly idolize and admire.

 

Meghan Loftus is a freshman at Saint Louis University studying Entrepreneurship within the John Cook School of Business.  She plans on merging her passion for philanthropy and her love of fashion into her future career within the fashion industry.  Meghan is a big believer in the power of lipstick and the Skinny Vanilla Latte.  To see more of Meghan's writing and personal style, visit her blog, Beyond the Boutique.

 

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