Socialite Obsession: Isabella Blow

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You know you’re someone when Anna Wintour speaks at your memorial service. Or when Joan Collins speaks at your funeral. Joan would never waste her time on mere mortals.

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Isabella Blow didn’t need to die to get such reverential treatment. She chose to end her life in spite of it, after battling depression and being diagnosed with ovarian cancer. But let’s not have her death and much-publicized disappointments overshadow her  brilliant  life.

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When one thinks of Isabella Blow, they think of her outrageous hats. This post will feature a few of these, and highlight some creative achievements that get overshadowed by her personal tragedies in the media.

  • She began as an assistant to Vogue’s Anna Wintour. Did not freak out.
  • She was a muse for designer Phillip Treacy, with whom she shared a lifelong collaboration after he created a wedding headdress for her.
  • She was the Fashion Director for Tatler.
  • She discovered the fashion world’s enfant terrible Alexander McQueen and model/actress Sophie Dahl.
  • She consulted for DuPont Lycra, Swarovski and Lacoste.
  • She made a cameo in Wes Anderson’s The Life Aquatic

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And these accomplishments are just the icing. She was a socialite, but when out and about in the fashion scene, she didn’t merely get tipsy with friends. She made deals and enjoyed creative collaborations. She was more interesting than she was beautiful. More business-minded than she was bubbly. And more sensitive than many of us. She left us too soon.

Simon Blow

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