4 posts tagged "Sophie Dahl"
Curator Alistair O’Neill only met the late Isabella Blow once. He was at an art opening with designer Julien Macdonald, one of the late, great Blow’s charges, whom he studied with at the Royal College of Art. “Isabella was wearing a famous Philip Treacy hat, which is in the exhibition. It had feathers around the eyes, which covered her nose and her mouth and her forehead,” he recalled. “I spent the evening talking to her and was completely fascinated. But all that I could concentrate on were her eyes, because I couldn’t really see her mouth. I could only just about listen to what she was saying, and I was just mesmerized by this image of these eyes being framed by the feathers. The combination of her intelligence and her laughing was really intoxicating,” he continued. “I’ve never forgotten that.”
On November 20, O’Neill, along with Shonagh Marshall and Central Saint Martins, will aim to bring the editor, patron, and muse’s work and wardrobe to life with the opening of Isabella Blow: Fashion Galore! at the Somerset House in London. Before her tragic suicide, in 2007, Blow was a pillar of London’s emerging fashion community. Having worked everywhere—from British and American Vogue to The Sunday Times to Tatler—Blow is credited with discovering such designers as Alexander McQueen (as the story goes, she bought his entire graduate collection after it walked down the Central Saint Martins Runway in 1992), milliner Philip Treacy, Jeremy Scott, and Hussein Chalayan, as well as models Sophie Dahl (whom she once described as a “blow-up doll with brains”) and Stella Tennant.
Aside from being a steadfast supporter of young talents (Treacy and McQueen both lived with her at one point, and she not only gave the designers financial and editorial support but also fed them ideas from her wealth of historical knowledge—fashion and otherwise), Blow, who came from a complicated aristocratic background, was known as a great eccentric—both in her behavior and her dress. Her infamous wardrobe comprised the most extreme pieces by all of the conceptual up-and-comers she helped along the way. And, of course, Treacy’s hats were her screaming signature. Following her death, her sartorial collection was to be sold at Christie’s to settle her estate, but Blow’s friend Daphne Guinness swooped in at the last minute and purchased every piece, because that’s how Isabella—or Issy, as she was known—would have wanted it.
O’Neill, however, did not want to simply paint Blow as an eccentric. “I thought it was important to distance Isabella from those literary ideas of the English eccentric, because they’re often quite tragic,” he explained. “And I’m not sure Isabella was fully tragic—she was quite brave, and very funny. She had a very bored and black humor.” Furthermore, Blow always wore her outfits—whether it be a metallic McQueen corset or an ensemble crafted from brightly hued garbage bags—in a deeply considered manner. “Isabella used her clothes, her hats, and her accessories as a means to modify and transform herself,” said O’Neill. “She had a great eye for silhouette, and her hats were almost a means of plastic surgery for her face, without going under the knife,” added Marshall. “She said they can lift you, they can make you look different, and I think that was something that she really indulged in.” Continue Reading “Isabella Blow: Beyond the Eccentric” »
The rumor mill was working overtime this weekend, buzzing with speculation that gallerist Jeffrey Deitch is set to be tapped as the new director of L.A.’s Museum of Contemporary Art. The official word comes through today. [LAT]
English model Sophie Dahl married her jazz musician boyfriend Jamie Cullum in the U.K. this weekend. In place of our usual quip, we’ll just leave you with a smitten awwww. [Vogue U.K.]
Word on the street is that Emma Watson’s little bro, Alex—last seen co-starring with his sister in Burberry’s Spring campaign—will hit the runway for the label in London later this month. Is some Hogwartian spell behind this? (Well, the family good looks don’t hurt, either…) [Fashionista]
NYC mayor Michael Bloomberg is gathering the troops at Macy’s Herald Square tonight to discuss his office’s new, yearlong fashion retail initiative, Fashion NYC 2020. The issues on the table include job creation for the next decade and how to amp up NYC’s presence in the increasingly international world of fashion. Our suggestion: If the inaugural Fashion’s Night Out is any indication, getting the Olsen twins to bartend seems to get people interested. [WWD]
Opening Ceremony and Levi’s have confirmed they’re working on a collaboration (pictured)—first hinted at on Twitter last week—to hit stores next month. The collection will focus on corduroy and launch at OC stores in NYC, L.A., and Tokyo during New York fashion week. [WWD]
Xtina isn’t the only good thing to come out of Staten Island. Witness Sophie Dahl’s winning cocktail number at last night’s Golden Globes. Sourced at Decades, the platinum, bugle-beaded dress was designed by Ceil Chapman, who was known, in her day, as Marilyn Monroe’s favorite designer. The native New Yorker created one of the gowns worn by Monroe for her very first performance for a live audience—entertaining the U.S. troops in Korea. Beloved by Hollywood beauties like Elizabeth Taylor and Deborah Kerr, Chapman was a sort of Marchesa of the fifties and early sixties. [Ed.’s note: Maybe she was a distant relation to Georgina?] Although it was Drew Barrymore who most overtly channeled Marilyn on the red carpet with her poofy ‘do, we’re guessing that Sophie, in her shimmy-ready dress, didn’t have too many Dahl, er, dull, moments.