10 Things You Didn’t Know About… Oscar de la Renta

Hey there,

Oscar de la Renta makes the news today.  Three days ago, he would have turned 84 years old.  Five days ago, Peter Copping announced that he would leave the brand immediately.  So I thought it would be nice to get to know the late designer a little better!

Oscar de la Renta (Photo Credit: CFDA)
  1.  Oscar de la Renta was born July 22, 1932 in the Dominican Republic and died in Connecticut at the age of 82, after a long battle with cancer.  When he was 18, he travelled to Madrid to study painting at the Academy of San Fernando.  How did he get into fashion?  When he was in Madrid, he was enlisted by Cristobal Balenciaga to sketch for him.  Afterwards, he went to Paris and worked at Lanvin; and then he moved to New York in the early 60’s and set up his own label [1,2].

2.  He founded his company in 1965, and now the organization produced a full line of women’s accessories, bridal, home products, children swear and beauty, in addition to its signature women’s ready to wear collection.  The company, which employs 51 to 200 employees, has established its headquarters is in the US.  If your dream is to work for ODLR, check out the brand’s LinkedIn page (!) 😉 Today, the CEO is Alex Bolen, Oscar de la Renta’s son-in-law [3,4].

3.  In October 2014, Peter Copping became the designer of the brand.  He is British and had worked for prestigious brands such as Nina Ricci, Louis Vuitton, Sonia Rykiel, and Chrisitian Lacroix.  He was the first designer to propose a main show for the brand after Oscar de la Renta’s death.  On Wednesday (that is the July 20th, 2016), it was announced that Copping left the brand [5,6,7,8,9,10].

Peter Copping (Photo Credit: The New York Times)

4.  Oscar de la Renta received several awards by the CFDA (the Council of Fashion Designers of America).  The designer received the CFDA Lifetime Achievement Award in 1990, 2000, and 2007; and the CFDA Womenswear Designer of the Year Award in 2000 [11].

5. He served as the CFDA’s President from 1973 to 1976, and from 1987 to 1989.  He also supported the arts, and was on the boards of The Metropolitan Opera, Carnegie Hall, and Channel Thirteen/WNET.  He was also a board member of many important institutions: New Yorkers for Children, the Americans Society, and the Queen Sofia Spanish Institute [11,12].

6.  Oscar de la Renta  was very active in his native Dominican Republic, even if he settled in New York.  He received the Juan Pablo Duarte Order of Merit and the Order of Cristobal Colon, because of his charitable activities and personal achievements.  The Order of Merit of Duarte is the principal order of the Dominican Republic and was established on 1931.  The Order of Cristobal Colon (or The Order of Christopher Colombus) is another order of the Dominican Republic, that was established in 1937 [13,14,15].

7.  The designer identified the “10 Things Every Woman Should Have [16].

Screen Shot 2016-07-24 at 20.35.55

8.  A retrospective of the late designer was proposed by the Young Museum of Fine Arts in San Francisco.  An exhibit was displayed at the Clinton Foundation in 2013 [17,18,19].

9.  Many celebrities rocked an ODLR dress on the red carpet.  Fans of the brand include (but are not limited to!): Blake Lively, Allison Williams, Jessica Biel, Michelle Dockery, Karlie Kloss, Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen, Mischa Barton, Emma Watson, Amy Adams, Anne Hathaway, Emma Roberts, Cameron Diaz, Jessica Alba, Rachel Bilson, Nancy Reagan, Audrey Hepburn, Princess Diana, Jacqueline Kennedy, and Anna Wintour [20].

Blake Lively (Photo Credit: Harper’s Bazaar)
Jessica Biel (Photo Credit: Harper’s Bazaar)
Olsen Twins (Photo Credit: Harper’s Bazaar)
Mischa Barton (Photo Credit: Harper’s Bazaar)
Emma Watson (Photo Credit: Harper’s Bazaar)
Amy Adams (Photo Credit: Harper’s Bazaar)
Cameron Diaz (Photo Credit: Harper’s Bazaar)
Jessica Alba (Photo Credit: Harper’s Bazaar)
Jacqueline Kennedy (Photo Credit: Harper’s Bazaar)
Princess Diana (Photo Credit: Harper’s Bazaar)
Audrey Hepburn (Photo Credit: Harper’s Bazaar)
Nancy Reagan (Photo Credit: Harper’s Bazaar)

10.  As mentioned above, many celebrities are fan of the brand.  Some of them even married in Oscar de la Renta, such as Allison Williams and Amal Clooney [21,22]

Allison Williams (Photo Credit: Her Instagram)
Amal Clooney (Photo Credit: abcnews.com)

Did you know all of this?  Hope you learned a few things 😉


Screen Shot 2016-01-13 at 20.20.12


[1] http://www.vogue.co.uk/news/2014/10/21/oscar-de-la-renta-dies-designer-dead-aged-82

[2] https://www.britannica.com/biography/Oscar-de-la-Renta

[3] https://www.linkedin.com/company/oscar-de-la-renta

[4] http://fashionista.com/2016/02/alex-bolen-oscar-de-la-renta-ceo

[5] http://www.nytimes.com/2016/07/22/fashion/oscar-de-la-renta-peter-copping-departure.html?_r=0

[6] https://www.businessoffashion.com/articles/news-analysis/breaking-peter-copping-out-at-oscar-de-la-renta

[7] http://www.vogue.co.uk/news/2016/07/21/peter-copping-departs-oscar-de-la-renta-creative-director

[8] http://hypebeast.com/2016/7/oscar-de-la-renta-creative-director-peter-copping-resigns

[9] http://www.wmagazine.com/story/peter-copping-oscar-de-la-renta-society-swans-ladies-who-lunch

[10] http://www.elle.com/fashion/news/a37994/peter-copping-exits-oscar-de-la-renta/

[11] http://cfda.com/members#!oscar-de-la-renta

[12] http://cfda.com/blog/remembering-oscar-de-la-renta

[13] https://www.britannica.com/biography/Oscar-de-la-Renta

[14] http://www.emedals.com/a-dominican-republic-order-of-merit-of-juan-pablo-duarte-by-godet-berlin

[15] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Order_of_Christopher_Columbus

[16] http://www.allure.com/shopping/fashion-designer/2012/oscar-de-la-renta-style-essentials#slide=9

[17] https://deyoung.famsf.org/exhibitions/oscar-de-la-renta-retrospective

[18] https://www.clintonfoundation.org/clinton-presidential-center/exhibits/temporary/oscar-de-la-renta

[19] http://www.huffingtonpost.com/andre-leon-talley/oscar-de-la-renta-exhibit-de-young_b_9612424.html

[20] http://www.harpersbazaar.com/celebrity/red-carpet-dresses/g4366/oscar-de-la-renta-red-carpet-celebrities/?

[21] http://www.vogue.co.uk/news/2015/09/20/allison-williams-wedding-and-bridal-gown

[22] http://www.vogue.co.uk/news/2014/09/30/amal-alamuddin-george-clooney-wedding-dress-gown-pictures

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