INSPIRATION LEADER DECEMBER - DIANE VON FURSTENBERG
The life of Diane von Furstenberg has been nothing but inspirational. From becoming a princess, to creating a brand that will be remembered forever, Diane has created an extrodinary life for herself.
She started designing in 1970 when she started craving independence from her husband, Prince Egon zu Fürstenberg of Germany. Although she did not have to work, she said, "The minute I knew I was about to be Egon's wife, I decided to have a career. I wanted to be someone of my own, and not just a plain little girl who got married." She has had quite a successful career at that. In 1972, she designed her infamous wrap dress and by 1976, she had sold over 5 million wrap dresses. Her achievement landed her the cover of Newsweek where she was dubbed a female liberation icon.
That dress made women feel independent and powerful, which was something many lacked before. Eventually, the demand for the dresses went down and Diane had to sell most of her licenses to stop the company from going bankrupt, but that didn’t stop her. In 1997, she relaunched the brand and it has been nothing but successful ever since.
Aside from her design career, she is heavily involved in numerous organizations. She is president of the Council of Fashion Designers of America which devotes their time to helping develop the talent of future designers.
In addition to CDFA, Diane has started the DVF Awards which honor women whose leadership skills and vision have has a positive impact on the lives of other women around the world.
Each honoree receives $50,000 to continue their efforts. The money is provided by Diane’s foundation, The Diller-Von Furstenberg Family Foundation. Some recipients of the award include Karlie Kloss, Dr. Jane Goodall, and Gabrielle Giffords.
Diane von Furstenberg has not only changed fashion, but she has changed the way women see themselves, She has created a dress that liberated women and taught them they can do whatever they set their mind to, as well as not becoming financially dependant on a spouse.
She is driven by helping young designers succeed and will continue to do so for years to come. Finally, she takes the time to honor inspiring women who are making a major impact on our world. Diane von Furstenberg is using her platform to make great change, especially with women. It it is hard not to be inspired by her.