RIP to a Legend: 12 Oscar de la Renta Quotes That Defined the Fashion Icon

It’s true that you can’t buy class.

One needs only to look at the career and personality of Oscar de la Renta for proof. Indeed, the passing of fashion’s most elegant designer last night was mourned by an entire industry – can anyone else design a wedding dress like this man? Who will the world’s biggest stars turn to, like Jackie Kennedy in the 60s, for timeless sartorial perfection on the red carpet? 

But perhaps the most important part of Oscar de la Renta lives on: His wisdom. For every young, aspiring fashion designer closing out his or her 80th hour of work this week, there’s a quote by the legend to offer that final bit of motivation.

Here are 12 of our favourite Oscar de la Renta quotes that have inspired us to this day and will continue to do so eternally:

1. “Always walk like you have three men behind you.”

2. “The great thing about fashion is that it always looks forward.”

3. “I’m a very restless person. I’m always doing something. The creative process never stops.”

4. “The qualities I most admire in women are confidence and kindness.”

5. “There is always an emotional element to anything that you make.”

6. “Fashion is about dressing according to what’s fashionable. Style is more about being yourself.”

7. “My job as a designer is to make a woman feel her very best.”

8. “We live in an era of globalization and the era of the woman. Never in the history of the world have women been more in control of their destiny.”

9. “I am not interested in shock tactics. I just want to make beautiful clothes.”

10. “I wanted this, I wanted to do this, but my work is me, and it has to be right.”

11. “I like light, color, luminosity. I like things full of color and vibrant.”

12. “I always say: To be well dressed you must be well naked.”


Oscar with Mayor Bloomberg photo by: Steve Eichner

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