2012 September 14

Things to Discuss: Oscar de la Renta's Open Letter to Cathy Horyn

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Scene 1, take 2. On Tuesday, New York Times critic Cathy Horyn reviewed Oscar de la Renta's Spring 2013 collection, commenting that "Mr. de la Renta is far more a hot dog than an éminence grise of American fashion." (Hiss!) The designer fired back this morning in an open letter, published in WWD. And we quote:

Dear Cathy,

This year I celebrated my 80th birthday. With pride, I can say that for more than 50 of those years I have been privileged to work in a profession that I deeply love, one that has given me tremendous pleasure. I have always considered that my role as a designer and as a great admirer of women has always been to make a woman look and feel her very best.

I respect and accept criticism because in many ways it does help us develop; I try to make my work better each time. What I do not accept is when criticism is personal. If you have the right to call me a hot dog why do I not have the right to call you a stale, 3-day-old hamburger? My advice to you is to abstain from personal criticism. Professionals criticize the clothes, not the people. 

(signed)
Oscar de la Renta 



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