NeueHouse's Evening With Diane Von Fürstenberg

NeueHouse's Evening With Diane Von Fürstenberg

 Tre Cassetta © trephoto

Tre Cassetta © trephoto

NeueHouse's Evening With Diane Von Fürstenberg

By Ilana Jael

Last Thursday, up and coming co-working space for creatives Neuehouse kicked off Fashion Week early and with a bang by inviting the legendary Diane Von Fürstenberg to share some of her hard-earned life and industry wisdom with an eager crowd.  When Fürstenberg was only 25, her iconic wrap dress spurred her company DVF to become of one of the fashion world’s biggest players and earned her a prestigious Newsweek cover by 29. This early success allowed Fürstenberg the opportunity to “fail”, as she faded into obscurity. Then came her rise from the ashes, when she introduced her famous designs to a whole new generation with her company’s 1997 relaunch.

 Tre Cassetta © trephoto

Tre Cassetta © trephoto

The major source of Fürstenberg’s spirit and verve seems to have been her mother Lillian Nahmias, who was arrested as young woman in Nazi-occupied Belgium and emerged from Auschwitz only weighing 49 pounds. Against medical advice, Lillian gave birth to Diane only 18 months later. Doctors were astounded that the child survived, let alone thrived. At her talk at NeueHouse, Fürstenberg repeatedly stressed the importance of staying true to oneself. She cited her lifelong authenticity as the reason she has so few regrets, noting that though one’s wealth or even health can be easily lost, one’s personal power or “character” can never be taken away.

 Tre Cassetta © trephoto

Tre Cassetta © trephoto

Fürstenberg also remarked positively on feminism, the “#MeToo” movement, and the increasing diversity in the fashion world. She explained that while she may not have always known what she wanted to do with her life, she always knew the kind of woman she wanted to be: a woman in charge of her own life, with the power to decide her destiny- exactly the kind of woman she undoubtedly became. And now she takes time to help the women of the next generation become who they want to be as well.

 Tre Cassetta © trephoto

Tre Cassetta © trephoto

Fürstenberg also spoke passionately about her philanthropic work which included founding the DVF awards, which are presented annually to four women who “display leadership, strength, and courage in their commitment to women's causes”. She also discussed her support of the creation of the Highline Park and the upcoming Statue of Liberty Museum.  As Fürstenberg also suggested, if you want to know more about this incredible woman, you can pick up her 2014 memoir “The Woman I Wanted To Be” for yourself!

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