April 11 is Oleg Cassini’s birthday.
That portrait! If Instagram was around in the seventies, that would be the filter we would all use.
I discuss Oleg Cassini briefly in “Star Struck Style,” noting that the designer “was known for helping to create Jacqueline Kennedy’s signature look during her time as First Lady of the United States.” I go on to rant about the word “classic” and how it is used to describe the style of Jackie O. At the time, there was nothing classic about it.
Cassini was an innovator. In the article where I discovered the image I posted above, the author notes that “Vogue” magazine’s Hamish Bowles described Cassini’s signature look as “high-impact.” That’s one of those phrases that I use incessantly when I’m discussing Aries style. In my first book, “Cosmically Chic,” I even compared the energy that defines the Aries look to a spark moving along the fuse of a stick of dynamite.
There is an immediacy to the Aries look. The best-dressed Aries women get their point across without beating around the bush. That’s why I’m always encouraging them to be editors when it comes to their wardrobes. Fussiness in fashion can be a failing for someone who is blunt in every other way.
A few online resources include charts for Cassini with a birth time that would place his natal Mars in the first house. In theory, that should make him an exceptional example of the characteristics of his sun sign — even though the planet is in wishy-washy Pisces. The man was one of the first people in fashion to really understand and appreciate the value of licensing.
Nowadays, Oleg Cassini’s name is on a lot of things that have nothing to do with the designer. It’s unfortunate to witness what has become of his legacy, but that’s fashion for you. With his second-house Aries sun (if the commonly-noted birth time noted is correct), he probably knew what he was getting into, anyway.