“I have turned the U.N. into a nightclub for the evening,” Diane von Furstenberg told Style.com at the second annual DVF Awards on Friday, held in celebration of International Women’s Day.
The U.N. did look pretty glam—it was dressed up with bold-print DVF couches and multicolored mood lights, complete with girl-power songs like La Roux’s “Bulletproof” blasting from the speakers. But as the music quieted and DVF took to the stage, along with an impressive group of presenters and honorees including Hillary and Chelsea Clinton, Laura Linney, Diane Sawyer, and Iman, it was quite clear that we weren’t in the Meatpacking District anymore.
“I often wonder what makes us different than men, because, after all, we are completely different animals,” von Furstenberg said to the audience. “I think the difference is that we give life.” So the powerhouse designer paid tribute to the woman who had given her life—her mother, a Holocaust survivor—before another daughter took to the podium.
“Every day my mother gives me another reason to be proud,” Chelsea Clinton said as she presented her mom with the evening’s Inspiration Award. The Secretary of State (above, with Tina Brown and DVF), who nearly tumbled to the ground on her way to the stage, responded, “You literally knocked me off my feet.”
The stories that followed from Clinton’s fellow award winners, like Elizabeth Smart, were heady, too. But von Furstenberg left everyone smiling with her closing message: “Be proud to be a woman and if you’re not a woman, be proud anyways.”
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