Thursday, September 6, 2007

Feel like a woman...wear a dress!

"Feel like a woman...wear a dress!" I love that quote from Diane von Furstenberg. Pretty much sums up her design philosophy and how she made a name for herself. Of course, she married a man with lots of money who funded her little dress business and if that wasn't enough of a reason to hate her, she also has quite a fabulous collection of homes.

The first three photos are of Diane's pied-a-terre in Paris designed with help from the designer Francois Catroux. You can really get a sense of her love of travel in the mix of textiles and prints in her apartment. It's a love that also extents to her famous fashion line. There is a great mix of antiques and contemporary art that is present in every home as well.

She's got quite a collection of Hermes boxes in the Paris apartment as seen in the dining room above. I wonder what she bought!


Diane von Furstenberg's new 14th Street building in New York not only houses her new shop but her office above and a glass room atop the building where she can sleep, do yoga and meditate. Lucky her!
But her real oasis of serenity and inspiration is her 75-acre Connecticut estate called Cloudwalk below. She bought it in 1974 on her 27th birthday and at the end of her marriage to Prince Egon von Furstenberg. This refuge from the insanity of life is where she goes to enjoy nature and spend time with family and friends. Perhaps, she'll go there after the insanity of fashion week is over!
The one thing you notice about all of her homes and her office are the books! You'll have to excuse the bad scanned image with the rip down the middle below but I just had to show her amazing library at Cloudwalk. The room also converts into a screening room and has armchairs by Adnet and a 1920's Orientalist painting above the fireplace. I dream of having a library that big someday. Sigh.

It's hard to imagine that the newest incarnation of Diane von Furstenberg's company has only been around for the last 10 years. She's a been a very busy woman but it really seems like she enjoys life and has fun. So why not wear a dress in her honor and feel like a woman! Unless of course you're a man, in which case, that might not be the best idea.

11 comments:

style court said...

HC,
You put this together really well. Great observations about the textiles. This caused me to pause and take a closer look at her homes.

Brilliant Asylum said...

Agreed! I have been pouring over these photographs studying each detail. Fabulous woman, fabulous post!

Nora said...

Hi! I reallly like your blog. I have to make more time to keep mine up. How I wish I had a Warhol of myself like both these woman do (Carolina and Dianne). Love it! Keep up the cool posts. ;)
_N

patriciagrayinc.com said...

Diane von Furstenberg is really a very class act and she has gracefully stood the test of time. I too love her library. Thanks for scanning and sharing all these marvelous photos.

Mélanie said...

Wonderful photos !! Both of her houses look terrific . She's so chic

Alice Olive said...

Love, love, love all the books. It's a dream to one day have floor to ceiling books - so luxurious.

And I love wear a dress, feel like a woman!!

Habitually Chic said...

Thanks everyone! I love that her homes are just as exciting and inspiring as her clothes. And her books are just to die for! Never trust anyone who doesn't read!

franki durbin said...

DVF is great for so many reasons... she 'lives on purpose' and doesn't expect great things to happen to her. She makes them happen. This is what I admire about her. She's feminine without seeming feminist...she surrounds herself in beauty because it is her vision. I've always just adored her sense of style (as well as what she serves up to the masses).

Interestingly, she (and her designers) manage to achieve light and airy libraries. So often, reading rooms are dark and woodsy. hers are imbued with streaming light, white shelves and high ceilings. It makes me long for a chenille chaise by the window so I can peruse her many many books!

great post, darling!

ALL THE BEST said...

You have really outdone yourself HC. This is a fantastic post, I love all the photos. DVF is one of my favorites. I've had one of her wrap dresses for years and it still looks great!

Suzy said...

She really is very stylis, and I am drooling over that library too!

Cote de Texas said...

I love her houses and style. I saw her in person a long time ago, over 30 years ago when I was still in High School. She was doing the wrap dresses and was all the rage. But at the time I saw her, she was at this clothing store where I was shopping and she was alone, just sitting on a couch waiting for the next customer to come in - she took one look at me and turned her head as if to say, "don't dare even think I'm going to come talk to YOU!!" That experience rates as one of the most humiliating momemts of my life. And I wasn't there to see her anyway. I didn't even know she was having a show that day. Biotch. I'm sure I looked a fright anyway. Those were the days when you went away to college with two pairs of jeans and 10 t shirts. Literally. 1972.

Joni

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