Oscar de la Renta is quickly becoming one of the designers whose interviews we’re most excited to read. They’re dishy, honest, and he always talks about the really interesting famous people he happens to be friends with. The latest, with Linda Fargo for Gotham magazine, does not disappoint.
They start off discussing de la Renta’s recently publicized high-profile relationship with Hillary Clinton. She and Bill hosted a retrospective of the designer’s work in his Presidential library in Arkansas, and de la Renta officially endorsed her for President at the CFDA Awards, where Clinton presented him with the Founder’s Award and called him an “icon.”
Which is something the two pals disagree on. “I am not an icon; that was Hillary’s idea,” de la Renta tells Fargo.
Another thing de la Renta and Clinton had to disagree on: Clinton’s hair. No, they didn’t fight over scrunchies–not exactly, anyway. While she was still Secretary of State, de la Renta advised her to cut her hair. She wouldn’t do it, but apparently, she had a pretty good reason:
She said she couldn’t do it then because when she arrived in a foreign country and asked for a hairdresser, Homeland Security would have to check the person out. [Editor’s note: With long hair, she could style it herself.] But doesn’t she look fantastic now?
So, in a way, Homeland Security and the difficulties it causes in regards to finding hairdressers abroad is responsible for Hillary Clinton’s affinity for scrunchies. Mystery solved.
Another famous friend de la Renta happened to fold into his conversation with Fargo was Coco Chanel, who apparently gave great birthday advice:
You know my first wife was French, and every Wednesday she would have lunch with Coco Chanel, who was not the nicest person, but they had a lot of fun. And Coco said something that rings so true: Birthdays are only important to a woman before 18 and after 90. In between you never ever talk about it. Because after all, age is in your mind.
I’ve kind of felt like ignoring my birthday ever since turning 21. Good to know Coco Chanel and I are pretty much on the same page!