The U.S. Postal Service will walk boldly down the runway next month as it hosts its most fashionable first-day ceremony ever when it honors fashion designer Oscar de la Renta on a set of new forever stamps.
The 11 stamps — 10 featuring details from dresses and gowns designed by de la Renta — along with a single stamp of the designer’s black-and-white portrait – will be formally released at 11 a.m. February 16 Vanderbilt Hall East at Grand Central Terminal in Manhattan.
The ceremony occurs during what is known as Fashion Week when designers release their latest collections, often to the glitz and glamour of special showings.
Those scheduled to be on hand for the stamp ceremony include former presidential candidate Hillary Clinton; Anna Wintour, artistic director of Condé Nast and editor in chief of Vogue magazine; Alexander L. Bolen, chief executive officer, Oscar de la Renta, LLC; Anderson Cooper, journalist, author, and son of designer Gloria Vanderbilt; and Janice D. Walker, vice president, Corporate Communications, U.S. Postal Service.
The Postal Service notes that there will be no autograph session, something typically held at many first-days allowing those in attendance to briefly interact with those taking part in the ceremony.
Internet glimpses of appreciations for the designer inevitably include the words “pioneer,” “elegant,” and “gentleman.”
Among the many celebrities he dressed was Clinton. They met during her first year she served as first lady in the White House. Clinton not only became a regular client of his, but they also became friends, which extended to their spouses, according to a story published in 2014 by MSNBC. De la Renta designed Clinton’s gown for her daughter’s wedding and also convinced Wintour in 1998 to feature the first lady on the cover of Vogue, the story said.
The stamps honor one of the world’s leading fashion designers. For about 50 years starting in 1956 when he was just 24, de la Renta created glamorous, sophisticated clothes that showcased the distinctively feminine attributes of the women who wore them, the Postal Service said. His innovative designs and close attention to detail elevated American style and brought international attention to New York as a world leader in fashion.
De la Renta moved from Europe to New York City in 1963 when he began working for Elizabeth Arden. Two years later, he debuted his own collection for the first time. He captured the beauty and ease American women craved in their gowns and suits. His clothes reflected the duality of the American woman — feminine without looking fragile, authoritative yet still refined. His garments were regularly featured on the covers of high fashion magazines.