Yesterday evening, Fashion Week coordinator Fern Mallis, sat down with designer Oscar de la Renta for an interview at 92Y’s uptown location, (and we were so excited to be in the audience!).
As soon as Oscar de la Renta stepped onto the stage, his charming accent, warm smile, and impeccable storytelling had us captivated. Born in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, young Oscar grew up with 6 sisters. He always had real entrepreneurial drive; he said when he was younger, he planted corn and spinach in the garden to sell back to his mother. When he was seven, Oscar tried to make perfume from flowers to sell to his sisters! He described going out early in the morning to collect the dew drops that sat on the flowers, thinking that maybe this was what constituted perfume. This memory is incorporated in his first perfume bottle which has a small dewdrop on it. Living in the Dominican Republic, Oscar had access to some of the most beautifully scented flowers. A favorite, the Lady of the Night.
Oscar’s interest in art started from a young age, delving into painting and sketching. At 18, he attended art school in Spain. In Madrid, he got his first major exposure to fashion and his job at Balenciaga put him on the designing path. It was impressive to hear about how Oscar’s networking and courage led him to where he is today. During the first 24 hours that Oscar was ever in Paris, his sketches earned him a job offer at Dior. That same week, after a friend introduced him to Antonio Castillo, he was offered a position as Castillo’s assistant at Lanvin. Oscar took the Lanvin position, and has since then had the opportunity to work at Balmain. After meeting Elizabeth Arden on a one-week trip to the United States, Oscar was ready to start developing his own line.
Oscar de la Renta has been extremely successful and has had a lasting impact on fashion. His clientele include political figures, entertainers, and royalty, who are all drawn to de la Renta’s stunning evening wear and red-carpet-destined gowns (he is called , after all, the “Couture Conquistador”). Just earlier this week, Oscar was awarded the CFDA’s Founder Award.
Since we are now in an ODLR mood, we’ve taken some iconic Oscar de la Renta red-carpet looks and paired them with lingerie picks from Pink Slip! Have fun shopping the look:
Top: Eberjey Giovanna set. Left: EberjeyTheodora Chemise. Middle: Lous Ethnic Chic Bustier Bra. Right: Addiction Nouvelle set.