von Furstenberg, Egon (Edvard) 1946-2004
von FURSTENBERG, Egon (Edvard) 1946-2004
See index for CA sketch: Born June 29, 1946, in Lausanne, Switzerland; died of liver failure June 11, 2004, in Rome, Italy. Aristocrat, fashion designer, banker, and author. Known as the "prince of fashion," von Furstenberg was a former banker turned fashion designer whose high-profile life often made him the talk of the society pages. The son of a German nobleman and a mother who was an heiress of the Fiat automobile fortune, he studied economics at the University of Geneva, where he graduated in 1966. A year as a Peace Corps teacher in the Congo was followed by employment at Chase Manhattan Bank in New York City. Having been interested in fashion, even as a young boy, when he married fashion designer Diane Helfin—now well known as Diane von Furstenberg—he was inspired to attend the Fashion Institute of Technology and make clothing his vocation. He left banking to become a buyer for Macy's. His first designing assignment was to create a line of clothing for large-size women; he then started creating new styles for men, as well as women, and founded his own company in 1977. Initially based in New York City, the company later moved its headquarters to Milan and then opened a second office in Rome. In addition to menswear, von Furstenberg designed accessories and furnishings. When his first marriage ended, he became interested in encouraging single men to learn how to decorate and dress fashionably on their own; he subsequently cowrote two books on these subjects: The Power Look (1978) and The Power Look at Home: Decorating for Men (1980).
OBITUARIES AND OTHER SOURCES:
Chicago Tribune, June 12, 2004, section 2, p. 11.
Los Angeles Times, June 12, 2004, p. B17.
New York Times, June 12, 2004, p. B6.
Times (London, England), June 17, 2004, p. 34.
Washington Post, June 12, 2004, p. B6.