Prince Egon von Furstenberg was born in Lausanne, Switzerland in June 1946 to a noble German family on his father Tassilo's side. His mother Clara, was Italian, the sister of Giovanni Agnelli who owned Fiat Motors.
Egon was educated in Switzerland where he obtained his degree in economics. He was to go into banking but instead in 1972, he joined Parson's School of Design in New York. He worked at Macy's Departmental Store in his spare time.
Fürstenberg began his career as a buyer for Macy’s, and took night classes at the Fashion Institute of Technology. He began designing clothes for plus size women, and later expanding to full fashion and ready-to-wear lines.
On July 15, 1969 at Montfort l’Amaury, Yvelines, France he married the Belgium born Diana Simone Michelle Halfin, daughter of a Holocaust survivor. She was Jewish, and the senior Fürstenbergs objected to the couple’s union on that basis. They hat two children, Alexander Egon and Tatiana Desireée. Diane von Furstenberg retained his name even though they were divorced after 10 years of separation. She is a renowned American fashion designer in her own right.
In 1975 Egon started his own label in the United States, marketing a line of pullovers and men's shirts. He began womenswear in 1977. In 1983, he started up his couture business in Italy. In 1990, Egon von Furstenberg introduced wedding and evening dresses into his collections.
During Rome's Fashion Week, his models would wear his creations while walking down Rome's Spanish Steps so famed as a tourist attraction, instead of a catwalk.
His house eventually included many other lines such as menswear, cosmetics, sunglasses, furnishing fabrics, ties, handbags and leather goods.
Egon von Fürstenberg died at Spallanzani Hospital in Rome. According to the New York Post, Fürstenberg’s widow stated that he died of liver cancer caused by a hepatitis C infection picked up in the 1970s; other sources suggest that AIDS was the underlying cause.
His designs were both eccentric and elegant. They have been very popular with elegant women for thirty years. He was renowned for his colour and romantic elegance. His logo spoke of his noble blood and love for high society - a curvy crown with a star.