1. Tell us a little about your book.
Diane von Furstenberg: A Life Unwrapped is a biography of one of the most influential and controversial legends of American fashion, an iconic designer whose creations captured the modern feminist spirit and whose private life kept the gossip press busy for decades. I’ve taken a “life and times” approach in the book, so that it’s more than the story of one woman’s life. It’s the portrait of an era – the very particular and vanished Manhattan of the 1970s. At least, that’s what I tried to do.
2. Diane von Furstenberg has been considered a fashion icon since the early ‘70s, but I don’t think as many people are aware that she's also a feminist figure. Was it both of these characteristics that first interested you in writing this book?
Diane’s feminism definitely played into my decision to write about her. I’m always looking for subjects who either in their personalities or accomplishments or circumstances embody the spirit of their time. Diane, to me, symbolizes second wave feminism. She showed how a woman could have a man’s life of power and money and success and still be a woman. She could also smoke a lot of pot and sleep around and still make it to the top!
3. What were the biggest pleasures of researching and writing A Life Unwrapped?
Meeting people I never would have met otherwise (like Fran Lebowitz), and traveling to places (like Bruges, Belgium) I never would have visited otherwise.