LOS ANGELES (Variety.com) - Legendary fashion designer Oscar de la Renta, who dressed generations of celebrities in red carpet and evening gowns, has died after battling cancer at 82.
He first came to fame dressing Jackie Kennedy, and went on to dress well-known women of the 1960s through the present. Among the actresses who appreciated his red carpet gowns were Cameron Diaz, Oprah Winfrey, Kristen Stewart, Penelope Cruz and Jessica Chastain.
Though his ruffles and satin were undeniably feminine, he told Elle magazine, "I hate pretty. It's a very empty word. It gives a bad name to beauty."
His work was also a favorite of first ladies — he dressed Nancy Reagan in the 1980s and then provided inaugural gowns for Hillary Clinton and Laura Bush. Hillary Clinton introduced a recent retrospective of his designs, saying, "His name alone evokes elegance and timeless beauty. And his designs give each of us a chance to feel like we're special, too."
Born in the Dominican Republic to a powerful family, de la Renta went to study painting in Spain and became and apprenticed with Cristobal Balenciaga before moving to Paris to work at Lanvin and Balmain. He launched his ready-to-wear label in 1965 in New York.
He married Francois Langlade, editor of French Vogue, who died in 1983. His second wife, who survives him, is philanthropist Annette Reed.
ABC News reported the news of his death.