Some people are just perfection personified; Carolina Herrera is one of those who would turn heads just for being meticulously dressed in elegant attires. Always cladded with panache, she is not just a designer who designs opulent dresses, but would exude class herself for always dressed to the nines. No wonder, she was titled one of the best dressed women even before she thought of getting her hands dirty in the fashion industry. A lot of who Carolina Herrera today is accredited to her grandmother and her mother who believed a woman is more than just a beautiful visage, and oh how gracefully Carolina has taken their legacy forward.
The Living Fashion Legend-Carolina Herrera
Having an aristocratic lineage, visits to fashion gatherings were a norm, it will not be presumptuous to say that Carolina lived and still lives the fashion. Even with no formal education in designing and fashion, her upbringing to always be a lady, defined her fashion inclination. But she is more than the elegantly dressed elite.
An equestrian by heart, this Venezuelan fashion cognoscente was eminent among the socialists due to her haute couture. Frequently listed as one of the most well-dressed individuals, Carolina did not make her debut as a designer until 1981, upon persistence of her close friend, Diana Vreeland who was a prominent in lifestyle landscape due to her position as an Editor-in-Chief. Indeed, friends are always aware as to how to guide you to take a leap and outshine!
Upbringing Matters – The Penchant For Class
Always poised and soignée in perfection, Carolina was bound to excel in the world of fashion. Born on 8th of January, 1939 to an air force officer/governor of Caracas and his wife, María Carolina Josefina Pacanins y Niño, she was more than a groomed lady. Brought up in an environment that was scrupulous of how one carries herself, Carolina, along with her other three siblings, was cultured to maintain a demeanor of class and elegance while being astute and adroit. Inevitably, she is not just a woman with a high fashion sense but a well-read individual and a skillful horse rider.
Style That Catches Eyes and Wins Hearts
Appointed as a PR consultant for Emilio Pucci in 1965, in Caracas, Carolina was not aware that one day she would move to New York and would be celebrated there for her own chic ensemble. Married at the young age of 18, Carolina and her husband, Guillermo Behrens Tello, separated after 7 years of marriage, they parented two daughters. It was not until her second marriage to Reinaldo Herrera Guevara, the 5th Marquis of Torre Casa, that she came to prominence for her jet-setting lifestyle. Accustomed to the life of luxury as she was used to wearing Dior and Lanvin, Carolina had a very strong understanding of cultured casual wear and her elegant Parisian fashion caught many eyes.
Beginning Of An Adventure – New York
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The adventure commenced when she moved to New York in 1980. Though she was the talk of the town for her immaculate style, it was her friend who urged her to launch her own brand and thus began the journey of Carolina Herrera as a lifestyle savant who would later style some of the most prominent individuals, namely, Jacqueline Onassis, Laura Bush, Duchess of Cadaval-Diana, Michelle Obama, and Melania Trump and Renée Zellweger.
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A seed that was sowed upon the request of a friend has now its roots in more than 50 countries. Initially a clothing brand, CH Carolina Herrera now caters to all essentials pertaining to luxury lifestyle. From Balloon Sleeved Gowns that give you the fairytale vibe to Scoop Neck Gowns for your friend’s bridal shower, her evening gowns have the Parisian aura that is to be cherished. Whether you are a sucker for luxury make-up that is classic yet contemporary or you want to keep your eyes protected with a chic eyewear, Carolina Herrera can gratify all your style related indulgence.
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Carolina Herrera has always been the part of fashion headlines and why shouldn’t she. She has redefined elegance as something that can be worn not just through clothing but also via person’s own mien. How one carries herself makes all the difference and this stance towards styling is reflected in every piece creatively crafted to bring the best in the client. She believes that it does not matter whether one wears something time-honored or casual, how one wears it sets her apart from the crowd. Though the list of her achievements as a design maestro is too long to be covered here, few worth auscultating are listed below to laud her services to the lifestyle industry.
- In 1972 her name was listed on the International Best Dressed List
- And again, listed in the 1980 Hall of Fame for her conspicuous appareling style.
- Iman, the then supermodel, modeled for Carolina Herrera first show.
- In 1981 her collection was featured in Women’s Wear Daily and Tatler.
- Queen Sofia Spanish Institute recognized her services in lifestyle and awarded her with a Gold Medal in 1997.
- She is one of the board members of CFDA since 1999.
- In 2002 she was awarded the Gold Medal for Merit in Fine Arts in Spain. King Juan Carlos presented her with the Award.
- In the same year, she bagged the International Center in New York’s Award of Excellence.
- She was Womenswear Designer of the Year for 2004.
- For her relentless services to the fashion industry, she was presented with the Golden Plate Award of the American Academy of Achievement.
- She graces the Vogue cover page with her presence for 7 times.
- She was even awarded the Fashion Group International Superstar Award.
- She was appreciated in 2012 as the Style Awards Designer of the Year .
- For Artistry of Fashion, she was acknowledged by being awarded the Couture Council Award in 2014.
- She was presented with the Geoffrey Beene Lifetime Achievement Award from CFDA in 2018.
From being the Venezuelan to becoming most famous New York city based designers, Carolina Herrera’s contribution to New York fashion cannot be neglected
Elegance Personified: Jubilation of Femininity Through Design
If you fantasize fairy tales for their wardrobe, you will certainly drool over the sophistication fondly crafted to perfection at Carolina Herrera. Here anything minimal is deeply detested for what is a style without a drama. Bright colored slim-leg pants that can uplift your street style or that fringed crepe dress you can flaunt on a hang out with friends, CH Carolina Herrera and Carolina Herrera has something for everyone who values grandeur.
She set her own hallmark during her first runway show at Metropolitan Club, New York. She mesmerized the audience with her 31 pieces tailored with finesse. The elaborated sleeves, carefully thoughtful cuts and luminescent, voluptuous gowns emanated glamor without being vulgar or revealing.
True to her upbringing, her designs radiate with grace and femininity as she does not believe in objectification via fashion. For her, “fashion is a dream” that can only be realized by being adorned by a human.
She Came, She Conquered!
Apart from her beautifully tailored evening wear, she is popular among the elites for her detailed designed wedding gowns. Some of the notable celebrities and aristocrats who have been lucky to be dressed in the wedding dresses designed by her are Olivia Palermo, Jessica Simpson, Kristen Stewart (for her role in Twilight), Emmy Rossum, Christina Hendrick and Idina Menzel.
What Wins The Most Hearts
While grace and elegance are constant in all her designs, she is popular for carrying her staple style of white top paired with the ball skirt. She raised the bar too high with her debut as a designer but what brought her to the spotlight was her wedding dress designed for the first lady, Caroline Kennedy. Despite the fact that she handed over her designation to Wes Gordon in 2018, Carolina still rules the lifestyle world through her legacy.
Carolina Herrera has always risen to the occasion, be it her wedding designs that allured the customers for their artistry or her line of luxurious fragrances, the delicious concoction of spices and plants that invigorate the senses. Her dedication to the lifestyle industry is remarkable. From Carolina Herrera clothing line to CH Carolina Herrera, Carolina Herrera New York and Carolina Beauty, the brand has made its name and has lived up to it. In fact, not only has she managed to celebrate beauty and femininity, she has contributed significantly towards making fashion education accessible to many inspiring individuals who want to pave their own routes but struggle to initiate. All the more reasons to admire this fashion diva.