Diane von Furstenberg is so identified with her wrap dresses that it's difficult to imagine a time before they and her clothing company DVF took women's fashion by storm.
At age 21, she came to America from Europe with a dream — one that she eventually accomplished through designing the iconic dresses, a symbol of female empowerment that's helped her become a household name. Today, the brand's clothing is carried in more than 55 countries, and von Furstenberg is the chairwoman of the Council of Fashion Designers of America.
"I wasn't sure what I wanted to do originally, but I knew the kind of woman that I wanted to be, which is independent," the 69-year-old von Furstenberg said. "I became the woman I wanted to be through my dresses."
In 1970, she designed her first dress, which was created at a friend's textile factory in Italy. Four years later, von Furstenberg launched the wrap dresses that would make her famous and enable her to live the "true American dream."