Celebrating Women in Fashion
March is Women’s History Month! In the fashion realm, we’ve come a long way, but still have a long way to go. We wanted to highlight three women whom we admire in the fashion world.
Born in Rome and having spent time in London and the United States, Elsa Schiaparelli was exposed to a grand palette of art and culture. She had no proper training in either fashion nor business. After years without success, a faux-bow sweater helped launch her career in 1927. Her designs were innovative. Broad shoulders with straight lines to exposed and colored zippers, it was evident that her designs were just as creative as the people in her life. This includes Salvador Dali and Jean Clement. Classic yet amusing and juxtaposition at its finest. Schiaparelli is one of few fashion houses today that keeps its homage to their founding designers. From head-wraps to gold surrealist jewelry, you can still spot a Schiaparelli making from a mile away.
Today we can’t think of brides and wedding gowns without thinking of Vera Wang. At 23 she was a senior fashion editor at Vogue where she then held that position for 17 years. Upon her departure from Vogue she worked at Ralph Lauren where her design career began. Inspired by her own struggle to find a wedding dress she liked, she decided to design her own. This is where the concept of her new business venture was born. In 1990 she opened her own boutique on Madison Avenue where it did not begin and end with brides finding the right wedding dress. Her boutique was about empowering the busy women who too were deserving of the entire fairytale experience. The designer has since expanded into dressing Hollywood's A-listers for red carpets to figure skating costumes, dressing olympic figure skaters such as Nathan Chen.
Three words, the wrap dress. Belgian-American, born to a Romanian father and Greek mother, Diane Von Furstenburg began designing in 1970 to promote a sense of her independence. She wanted her own career apart from her marriage to Prince Egon zu Fürstenberg of Germany. In 1972, she made her now famous wrap dress. A cotton-jersey dress in various colors and patterns, worn by all sorts of women. It's simple wrap and tie design flattered all bodies. It became an iconic uniform of the 70’s and continues to hold its status today. Known for her figure-flattering dresses, never shy of pattern and color, women everywhere continue to wear her designs.
These are just three of the women in the fashion industry that we admire here at Mela. We are not just to be celebrated for a month. We give credit to those before us to be able to do what we do and we will continue for the people after us.
Here are some more resources on these incredible women: