Bonnie J Brown
The wrap dress, it’s an American closet classic that every woman should own. Not only does the style seem to endure fashion fads year after year, it also flatters every body type; from voluptuous curves to skinny minis, the wrap dress seems to emphasize only one’s best assets. One would imagine that a dress that makes everyone look good by simply slipping it on and cinching it at the waist would have some complex design technique holding it all together, when in truth, the real reason the wrap dress is such a fashion success is through the machinations of one Diane von Furstenberg.
When von Furstenberg first came on the scene in 1972 the wrap dress had been around for decades, but with little fanfare. Von Furstenberg revolutionized the garment, and so too became known as the inventor of the wrap dress. She updated its features by using cotton jersey with fun prints and colors and also re-tailoring the dress to fit and flatter the figure. The dress was meant â€œto symbolize female power and freedomâ€ and so marketed the dress by saying: â€œfeel like a woman, wear a dress.â€ The easy style and cut of the wrap dress along with the clever slogan obviously caught on and the dress is still considered von Furstenberg’s hallmark piece, even though she designs much more, including women’s sports wear, swim, and cosmetics, among others.
The wrap dress has always been linked to not only Diane von Furstenberg the business but to Diane von Furstenberg the person as well, which in some ways may have limited the fashion line from moving into new or different fashion territories. But with the new ad campaign coming out for her spring 2008 collection, von Furstenberg the person is stepping slightly back from the business, still designing, but letting the clothing speak for itself through the help of artist Francois-Marie Banier.
1976 Wrap dress: metmuseum.org
Dianne VonFustenberg: z.about.com
Fall 2007 collection: dvf.com
Spring 2008 Collection Francois-Marie Banier ad: frillr.com
Spring 2008 collection: dvf.com