Saturday, May 19, 2007

Isabella Blow RIP

Isabella Blow died last week (7 May 2007). She lived and breathed fashion - and helped the careers of designers like milliner Philip Treacy and Alexander McQueen (McQueen described her as "a cross between a Billingsgate fishwife and Lucretia Borgia") early in their careers.

This rather lovely article states:
Michael Roberts summed up Isabella's contribution to the world beautifully. "She was like an exotic bird," he said. "Issy was living rather like Diana Vreeland, the legendary fashion editor of the Fifties. She seemed to be trying to translate the styles of the Fifties and Sixties to modern life in a dull office in Hanover Square. At times, it could be difficult for her. Life tramples on people like that."
Isabella Blow - Blowing'em all away - The Independent (via NZHerald)
Isabella Blow - Vogue

What made Isabella special was she had such a grand and dramatic flair, that made no concessions to trendiness. While she wasn't what you'd call pretty, she was utterly compelling. The French have the term jolie laide (beautiful ugly) which is applied to a woman who is not conventionally pretty or beautiful yet has something powerfully alluring about her.

Dita von Teese is another example, she is not at all conventional looking but her tiny corseted frame, porcelain skin and ebony hair with a highly made up face add up to a harmonious whole. You just can't look away.

The Age has a great article on her influence on fashion after her visit to Australia for Fashion Week.


At 8:19 AM, Blogger Kaiser said...

Hehe. Thats a funny hat.


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