Just days before his death on Monday, Oct. 20, fashion designer Oscar de la Renta transferred the creative direction of his design brand to 48-year-old Peter Copping, which at the time it was reported by Business of Fashion, was to be effective Nov. 3. De la Renta announced that Copping would be responsible for setting “the design direction across all product categories” and report directly to the designer and Alex Bolen, the company’s chief executive officer and de la Renta's son-in-law.
The Dominican Republic-born de la Renta, known as the "sultan of suave," was adored as much for his ability to coddle his haute clientele, which included every first lady since Jacqueline Kennedy, and "ladies who lunch" such as C.Z. Guest, as he was for his luxe designs.
After trying to appoint disgraced designer John Galliano of Christian Dior for a temporary residence in his atelier, which prompted an outcry from critics still reeling from Galliano's anti-Semitic outburst at a Paris cafe, he and CEO Alex Bolen appointed British-born Copping, who had been at Nina Ricci for a successful three years, according to Women's Wear Daily.
Among the jet-set he considered friends, including Marie-Helene de Rothschild, Nancy Kissinger, Naty Abascal described the designer as “handsome, sexy, but most of all a good, caring friend.”