Diana Vreeland is one of the few people I see as a true revolutionary icon. I adore that she was born at the beginning of last century and was able to see the 20s in her 20’s, the 30’s in the 30’s and so on and so forth.
Diana had a vision of the world that was completely unique to her, and created a space where her readership at Harpers Bazaar and Vogue could escape, be inspired and live their best life.
It was the way she thought about nostalgia, experience and memory that entranced me. When reinventing the Costume Institute at the Met in New York, Diana did not just display the clothes as if it were a museum exhibition, she invited the audience to become immersed in the time they were created. To do this, wafts of French fragrance were expelled through the air vents, scenes would be curated so mannequins were interacting, flirting even. Commissioned head wear was so enormous it quite literally took your breath away. Diana championed fashion as fun, as culturally and socially an incredible tool for learning about history, or even the present.
The column Diane wrote for Harpers Bazaar called “Why don’t you…?” tickles me to no end. It was here she flexed her extravagant muscles and advised readers to:
Give a satin-finished platinum box with all the diamonds, rubies and sapphires in the world scooped together and smeared in a lovely design on the lid
How totally outrageous and full of folly! The suggestions were fabulous, imaginative and extreme, but they really made me think, why don’t I?