NEW YORK — Claire Vogelman, who designed eveningwear and dresses under her maiden name, Claire Newman, from the Thirties through the Fifties, died Sunday at Lenox Hill Hospital here. She was 93.
The cause of death was pancreatic cancer, according to her son and only survivor, Steven Sholem.
Services for Vogelman will be held today at 11:30 a.m. at the Frank E. Campbell Funeral Home, 1076 Madison Avenue, in Manhattan.
Born in Stamford, Conn., Vogelman studied fashion design in New York in the early Thirties. She worked in design for various eveningwear and daytime dress labels, including Abe Schrader, Cameo and Martinette Petites, before venturing out on her own. Some of her ballgowns were featured in Hollywood films in the Forties.
Her designs were sold in most major department stores in New York, Los Angeles and Chicago, her son said. "She had a very unusual taste in clothing and could recognize what was in style. She went back and forth to Paris many times to see the couture houses like Lanvin and Givenchy," he said.
Known for her impeccable way of dressing, she was not the type of person who would back away from suede, leather, sequins or color, with turquoise being her favorite color. Her closet was a time capsule of sorts, housing dresses and suits from such wide-ranging designers as Donna Karan, Molly Parnis, Gingette, Oscar de la Renta, Ribkoff Trends and Dana Buchman.
She left the fashion business after marrying Phillip Vogelman, president of Onondaga Silk, a textile company that sourced fabrics from the Far East and France. The former designer then focused on philanthropy. She was president of the women's division of the UJA-Federation and later was named president of the American Committee for Shenkar College of Engineering and Design in Israel.
Vogelman also worked for 10 years as president of the Daughters of Jacob Geriatric Center, a 1,000-bed assisted living facility in the Bronx. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to UJA-Federation, JDC, Shenkar College of Engineering & Design or Rockefeller University.
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