Oscar De La Renta was one of the last strong holds of the first wave of America Couturiers.
“I’ve lived every day to the fullest, and I’ve had a marvelous time. I’ve tried to be nice to the people I care about, and ignore the ones I don’t. I enjoy what I’ve done.”
Born in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, Oscar was the youngest of seven children and the only son. After his mother’s death at the age of 18, De La Renta moved to Madrid for school and began to sketch gowns for extra cash. After being noticed, De La Renta was offered an apprenticeship with Spain’s most famous couturier, Cristobal Balenciaga. Spending a few years with Balenciaga, his mentor, Oscar left to assist couturier, Antonio del Castillo at Lanvin.
“Walk like you have three men walking behind you.”
From there, Oscar moved to America, and to ready-to-wear, to become the designer of Elizabeth Arden, as she herself was not a designer. But 1965, Oscar De La Renta had launched his first collection, ready-to-wear of course. He married Francoise de Langlade, former editori-in-chief of French Vogue, in 1967 and was introduced to some of the most fashionable members of society. He began to first ladies and celebrities alike. In 1983, Oscar lost his beloved wife and he adopted a son from DR that he names Moises.
“I design clothes for women to wear. I am not interested in shock tactics. I just want to make beautiful clothes.”
Oscar would remarry in 1990 to his last wife, Annette Reed. Oscar kept his collections feminine and lady-like always and would never compromise on the beauty and comfort of the women he dressed.
Check out more of the handsome designer, below!