American fashion designer, Vera Wang, was given the lifetime honoree award by the CFDA at the June 3rd ceremony at Alice Tully Hall in New York City. The CFDA, or, Council of Fashion Designers of America, honored the designer for her 30 years in the fashion industry.
Vera Wang’s climb to the top was not an easy one. She explained in her acceptance speech, “The ongoing, unmitigating truth is I would have done anything to be in fashion. I would have swept floors, which I did at Vogue, swept up hair from a model’s haircut, pack up clothes, stay on a Friday night after the store closed to get it ready for the next day, which I did at Ralph (Lauren)”.
Vera did not begin her life with the intention of being a fashion designer. She actually spent her childhood dreaming of becoming a figure skater. Vera Wang trained for several years with pairs partner, James Stuart, who competed at the 1968 U.S. Figure Skating Championships. It wasn’t until Vera Wang failed to make the US Olympics team that she began to work in fashion. She still continues to ice skate and she even creates competition dresses for elite female ice skaters.
Vera Wang is most well known for her work on celebrities walking the red carpet and her bridal collection. Fashion photographers always find Vera Wang’s garments worn by iconic celebrities, like Sharon Stone, who paired Vera Wang’s lavender skirt with a simple gap shirt at the 1998 Academy Awards. Vera started her venture into wedding dresses when she opened her bridal brand with a shop at the Carlyle Hotel on Madison Avenue in 1990. Her wedding brand is now one of the most desired labels by brides-to-be.
Today, Vera Wang has an affordable line at Kohl’s and at David’s Bridal. She also has her own fragrance business and home-goods collection. Vera Wang still pushes the envelope in the realm of haute couture and caused a great buzz in the fashion world for her recent line of black wedding gowns. Vera Wang finished her acceptance speech by saying “To all the women and men I have dressed, thank you for your trust” and advises others that “I was always taught that anyone should be able to pursue their dream and that the biggest crime is not to try. That made me motivated, and I didn’t want to wonder what could have happened”. Vera Wang is a great inspiration to all those chasing their dreams, not just fashion designers. She truly deserves this great honor by the CFDA and we can’t wait to see what else she creates.