In the archives of Match

Twice Match met Ivana Trump the day after her divorce from the real estate magnate. The millionaire then distributed advice on love and money… With Retro Match, follow the news through the archives of Paris Match.

Donald Trump’s ex-wife Ivana Trump died last week of an accidental fall at her New York home. Former cross-country skier and model of Czech origin who fled communism, she married the future American president in 1977, accompanying him in the construction of his real estate empire. Separated in 1990 following her husband’s infidelities with Marla Maples, Ivana had obtained some 14 million dollars (30 million today) during the divorce pronounced in 1992.

Twice Match had met Ivana Trump the day after her separation, when she then launched into fashion, jewelry, but also the writing of novels and her memoirs. Books in which the richest divorcee in the world distilled her advice on love and money…

Here is the interview with Ivana Trump, as published in Paris Match in 1994.

Discover Retro Match, news through the archives of Match…


Paris Match n°2346, 12 mai 1994

Ivana Trump: “Marriage is above all a financial arrangement”

Interview Henry-Jean Servat, Photos Yann Gamblin

Paris Match. Don’t you find your life, which you support, hard like iron, that it is not found as a watermark in your books, is more restless than any of the novels?
Ivana Trump. My life, indeed, is more agitated than the most agitated of adventure novels…

You alone are a hero. Beating the pretty dolls of “Dallas” and “Dynasty” together.
You want to laugh. I am much more than that to myself. Because, in my life, you don’t know all the twists and turns.

We ask only to know more.
Not now. I will write my Memoirs later. When I have more to say.

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While waiting for this happy moment, what is on your heart that encourages you so much to launch into confidences?
In a book that I have just finished and which has nothing to do with fiction, I give advice. I receive, in fact, thousands of letters from all over the world. Women confess to me their distress after their divorce. They ask me about what should be done to obtain custody of the children or the granting of alimony. All are anxious and anxious to be forgotten.

In short, you give them your recipe so that they, like you, make good use of it.
I don’t have a recipe. I have never put any recipe into practice. Each case, of marriage as of separation, is a particular case. But beyond the technical considerations or the legal extensions, if I dare say, I specify, and I repeat, that a woman must always know everything about the financial situation of her husband.

To hear you, the marriage contract between two human beings seems to boil down to a financial arrangement.
But a marriage is a financial arrangement. Why hide it and fool yourself? Obviously it’s not just that. I also teach my interlocutors who are vexed by a separation not to let themselves be overwhelmed by harmful feelings of blind revenge. Even if these are natural emotions, we must refuse them, think of the future and forget the past.

How did you, Ivana Trump, overcome this ordeal?
First I was in shock. Like everyone. Then I realized that the sooner I got out of it, the better off I would be. What counts is to overcome one’s resentment, resentment and find serenity. Rich or poor, that’s not the problem. The main thing is not to get caught up in the whirlwind of despair.

What was your escape?
It’s simple: I worked. Me, I’m like that, I’ve always liked that. It’s my thing, it’s my trip.

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It would indeed be difficult to maintain that, in the field of doing business and raising money, you are not a specialist.
I am no more specialist than anyone else. My only claim to fame is that I did help my husband make a fortune. Indeed, when I met Donald Trump, he was not on the street, but he was working for his father for a salary of 50,000 to 75,000 dollars (300,000 to 450,000 francs). He got rich. With me and thanks to me. We made his fortune together.

You have become rich. With him and thanks to him. Do you have any idea how much money you have?
I do not wanna talk about it.

Why?
Because I cannot evaluate them with precision and also because they evolve every day. If I launched into estimates, it is not certain that they will still be valid the day you publish them.

When you say they are changing, is it down or up?
On the rise. Who do you take me for? Some say I throw money away. It’s not true. But if I spend it, I earn even more and I’m not a kept woman. I work and earn my money by the sweat of my brow.

Precisely, what kind of income, apart from those you obtained by separating from your husband, is yours?
I have a clothing brand in my name, or rather my first name, Ivana. On the street, everywhere, people call me Ivana. It’s a first name that is not common and, like that of Madonna, it is gaining ground. My label brings together factories that work for me all over the world, from the United States to Hong Kong and Romania. This line was designed from my ideas and it is distributed, for the moment, throughout the country, by teleshopping. That is to say, I have a program on television where I sell my dresses and the accessories that go with them, such as belts, and also jewelry, clips, necklaces, bracelets and rings.

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Do you release outfits like the ones you usually wear?
You already told me earlier that I was dressing up as a Christmas tree. Well! I only wear the clothes that I design. In any circumstance. It works and it sells well.

Do you have any idea how many outfits you own?
None. I have no more idea of ​​the number of dresses in my closets than of the number of those I have designed. I remember that one weekend, we had several airtime slots to sell Ivana’s clothes”. We had to cancel the Sunday one, because on Saturday evening, everything was sold: 150,000 dresses in a few hours I enjoyed myself. I like to do business.

Do you have time to have a little fun anyway?
Perfectly. I have a balanced sentimental existence. My life, even if it seems to you devoted solely to work, is also balanced. My head is fine. I have role models in my life, like my mother, whom I admire, and also Eleonore Roosevelt; both women bursting with energy. And authentic. Having known how to find the truth and give meaning to their lives.

According to you, you don’t like, literally and figuratively, to make movies?
I hate that. My own thing, which I hold, I’m sure, from my childhood in Czechoslovakia, is, I proclaim it from the rooftops, work. Spending hours sitting in an armchair waiting for orders on a tray, what horror! I respect this choice that others make, but it is not mine.


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