Belgian fashion designer Diane Von Furstenberg — birth name Diane Halfin — lived in Switzerland when she was 19 years old. In Geneva, she first met Egon von Furstenberg, who she described as “a wonderful, beautiful, cheerful, knowing‐everything, having‐been-everywhere, 19‐year‐old authentic prince,” The New York Times reported. “At 22, and three months pregnant, she married von Furstenberg and headed for America” with a clear vision. According to Diane, she didn’t want to simply be a princess. “I had to be someone of my own, and not just a plain little girl who got married beyond her deserts,” she said.
Diane then started a fashion empire in the U.S. She launched a cosmetics line, eyewear, perfume, lingerie, and a beauty book all with her name on it. But Diane’s most successful fashion piece was “the ubiquitous von Furstenberg wrap dress.” As detailed by The New York Times, Diane’s “body-hugging wrap dress” was “so emblematic of 1970s fashion that it hangs in the Smithsonian Institution.”
By the following decade, the Diane von Furstenberg fashion label lost popularity. But like many fashion trends, her brand became relevant again in the ’90s thanks to vintage shoppers falling in love with her dresses again. By 2009, Diane’s dresses were “worn by women like Jessica Alba, Madonna and Jennifer Lopez.” Her brand continued, and Diane helped other designers as the head of the Council of Fashion Designers of America for 13 years (via Harper’s Bazaar).