The fashion world is mourning today over the loss of the legend, Oscar de la Renta. He was 82 and believed to have lost his battle with cancer. This “sultan of suave” was one of the best of the best, and certainly left his mark on this industry. Best known for his gowns on the red carpets, he was a very popular gown choice with celebrities and even American First Ladies dating back to Jackie O. The last gift he gave to the world was the wedding gown he made for Ama Alamuddin, the new Mrs. Clooney, just a few weeks ago.
He left his native Dominican Republic to study painting in Madrid at the age of 18. Quickly realizing his love of fashion design, he scored an internship sketching for powerhouse Balenciaga, until he left to be a couture assistant at Lanvin in Paris. He launched his first ready-to-wear label in 1965, and then designed haute couture for French fashion house, Balmain. In 2006, his first bridal collection hit the runways.
“A huge mistake we make is forgetting that one day we will die,” he told Gotham magazine just last year. “We think that we are going to live forever. I always say life is a little like a garden. There is time to plant, then a time you have to weed. I always say: ‘Live, love and laugh.'”
Rest in peace, Mr. de la Renta.