Von Furstenberg, Diane

(1946- )
   She was born in Brussels, Belgium, as Diane Simone Michelle Halpin to a Jewish upper-middle-class Russian father and Greek mother. Educated at the University of Madrid and the University of Geneva, her introduction into fashion came as a photographer's assistant and later as a filmmaker's agent in Paris. She married jet-setter Prince Egon von Furstenberg (descendant of Empress Josephine) in 1969 and moved with him to New York, where they divorced after the birth of her second child. She opened Diane von Furstenberg Studio in 1970 and is best known for her "wrap dress," which she created in 1973. In 1975, she launched the fragrance Tatiana, named after her daughter, and partnered with Sears to create the Diane von Furstenberg Style for Living Collection.
   By the late 1970s, von Furstenberg had licensed her name to clothing accessories, cosmetics, and jewelry. She closed the business in 1988 but reopened in 1997 after a successful run on the home shopping network QVC, selling her famous wrap dress. In 1998, she published her memoirs, Diane: A Signature Life, and, in 2000, launched her website and online magazine. In 2001, she married American media mogul Barry Diller and, in 2003, received Dallas Market Center's Fashion Excellence Award. In 2006, von Fursten-berg opened her first freestanding store in her native Belguim, and another in St. Tropez. Her empire consists of a comprehensive luxury lifestyle brand that includes clothing, cosmetics, fragrances, jewelry, and swimwear, sold in her own nine stores as well as in stores in more than 50 countries.

Historical Dictionary of the Fashion Industry. .

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