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Tuesday 21 October 2014

Oscar De La Renta Has Died, Age 82

In news just in, iconic fashion designer Oscar De La Renta has died, age 82.

His last, most renowned dress must surely be that of the new Mrs Clooney, Amal Alamuddin.

De La Renta's health was described earlier this month by the NewYork Times as "precarious." He had cancer in 2006, and at his women's wear show in September, he was said to look "frail."

He was known for dressing celebrities, stateswomen and fashionable types the world over, and his dresses were a red carpet staple.

The Dominican Republic-born designer, the only son of seven children in a middle-class household in Santo Domingo, really made his mark when, in the 1960s, he dressed Jacqueline KennedyHe launched his ready-to-wear label in 1965 in New York.

Celebrities who wore his creations included Oprah Winfrey, Lea Michele, Jennifer Garner, Sarah Jessica Parker and many more.

He dressed first lady Nancy Reagan in the 1980s, and made the gowns for inaugural events for both Hillary Clinton in 1997 and Laura Bush in 2005. Michelle Obama finally wore one of his dresses this month.

Last year, Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) Executive Director Fern Mallis called him "the sultan of suave." At that event, he spoke of his cancer, saying, "Yes, I had cancer. Right now, I am totally clean. The only realities in life are that you are born, and that you die. We always think we are going to live forever. The dying aspect we will never accept. The one thing about having this kind of warning is how you appreciate every single day of life."

De la Renta was married twice; his first wife, Francoise de Langlade, died in 1983, of bone cancer. Shortly after her death, he adopted a son from orphanage in his native country. In 1989, he married socialite Annette Engelhard Reed, 74.

Only on October 13, the de la Renta design house announced it had named Peter Copping as creative director.

Vale, wonderfully talented Mr De La Renta.

Here is an interview with him, by New York Magazine, from March 2013:

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