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Arnold Scaasi dies

Arnold Scaasi dies

Designer Arnold Scaasi has died aged 85.

The fashion star was best known for his pieces worn by Hollywood greats such as Lauren Bacall and Dame Elizabeth Taylor, as well as first ladies such as Hillary Clinton.

Arnold's long-time friend Michael Selleck confirmed the designer had passed away from a cardiac arrest at New York's Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center.

One of his famous fans, Bette Midler, has paid tribute.

"Arnold Scaasi died last night. He was a wonderful character, hilarious, generous, and talented and I will miss his presence in this world," she wrote on Twitter.

Arnold won over clients with his use of bold colours and stand-out features such as bows, feathers and fur. He previously admitted he would never be a minimalist, and that he felt clothes with "adornment" were much more fun to wear.

All the women he dressed were dubbed the 'Scaasi Girls', with actress and singer Barbara Streisand being one of the most famous and longstanding. In 1969 the star wore a unique sequined, sheer pantsuit to the Academy Awards, where she picked up the best actress gong for Funny Girl.

It wasn't just red carpets where they collaborated; Arnold dreamt up several costumes for Barbara to wear in 1970 movie On a Clear Day You Can See Forever.

In 2002 his work was shown at the Museum-Fashion Institute of Technology in New York, where he spoke of what clothes meant to him.

“Fashion, it’s really about feeling good,” he told The Associated Press. “It should be fun to get dressed. I like exciting and pretty clothes that help women feel exciting and pretty.”

Arnold has no children, and was with his partner Parker Ladd for more than 50 years.

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