Fashion world mourns punk icon Vivienne Westwood

Fashion world mourns punk icon Vivienne Westwood

Vivienne Westwood in London on September 28, 2005Odd ANDERSEN

From Stella McCartney to Victoria Beckham via Jean-Charles de Castelbajac and Claudia Schiffer, the fashion world pays tribute to the committed British designer Vivienne Westwood, a punk icon who died Thursday at the age of 81.

“Vivienne Westwood’s obsession was to change our habits by changing the world”, summarized for AFP the French stylist, Jean-Charles de Castelbajac, welcoming a “wonderful woman, courageous and determined in her convictions”, who fascinated from their first encounter with his “Chicken Bone T-Shirts”.

“Her strength was that she spoke not only of fashion, but of conscience”, he added, recalling that “her ultimate fight and her ultimate sadness were the living conditions of Julien Assange”. She had also designed the wedding dress of his wife, Stella Assange, who paid tribute to her on Twitter.

Ultra-politicized and committed to the environment, the great lady of fashion died surrounded by her family in Clapham, south London.

Animal rights group Peta hailed the designer as an “eco-warrior”, “challenging the rest of the fashion world to start a revolution for animals and the planet”.

Peta recalls that Vivienne Westwood was one of the first to give up furs, choosing to donate rabbit bags already made for her collection to a shelter. She also took part in a Peta campaign “asking everyone to go vegetarian to save water and lives.”

“The world has lost a unique person and animals a true friend,” Peta said in a statement.

“Mocked down by the fashion industry, she is undeniably the undisputed queen of British fashion,” tweeted British stylist and musician Boy George.

“So sad to hear of the death of legendary designer and activist Dame Vivienne Westwood,” former fashion-turned Spice Girl Victoria Beckham posted on Instagram.

Mourning the disappearance of “one of the rarest British fashion icons”, her colleague and compatriot Stella McCartney hailed on the same network the one who “invented punk” and “inspired her career with bravery”.

Model Claudia Schiffer also paid tribute to her “genius” and “her unique voice, which will be irreplaceable and missed”.

Other celebrities from the world of cinema have also expressed their admiration. “Rest in punk”, wrote the American actress Jamie Lee Curtis, the star of Sex and the city Kim Cattral also hailing a “legend”.