Tuesday, April 13, 2010

How To Dress Like: Isabella Blow

With Gaga-mania at a fever pitch, it's hard for self referential fashion folk to remember that the highbrow whack-job look was actually patented and paraded by another of the industry's most unattractive leaders, Isabella Blow. The Tatler editor who was equally famous for discovering the likes of Alexander McQueen, Philip Treacy, Stella Tennant and Sophie Dahl, and her penchant for wiry, larger than life headpieces drank her way through a bottle of weed killer in 2007. The way I see it, the fascination with hats was simple enough, she didn’t think she was pretty and I guess if we were all as clever as she, there would be no need for botox – just shrouds, veils, poofs and dye.

Let's attempt to break down some of her most notorious photographed and front-row looks (ed's note: I saw her Chinese garden McQueen hat at the MET during the blogmode exhibit last year and I have to say, it's pretty near an original Da Vinci in my books):

1. Dress pretty normal from neck down. Drop a pretty penny though. Choose something tailored, slightly tight-ass schoolmarm, and most likely McQueen.

2. Look to your left. Grab the first object you see and put it on your head. A plate is fine, a mug would be better. A pack of cigs... even better.

3. If that don't feel hardcore enough for you, go searching for a plant or a live animal (a lobster preferably, as long as it's not slaughtered near Snookie).

This is actually a pretty historically relevant so extra points for you! (aristocratic women in the late 1890's - early 1900's wore full animals on top of their hats, raccoons, birds, rodents... oy vey!)

4. Tulle, chicken wire, or bubble wrap handy? Perfect veil material...

5. We're almost done, but let's not forget the finishing touches... know an up and coming totally brill artist-cum-designer, designer-cum-artist, rich boy-turned-rebel or rebel-turned poor boy?

Introduce them to your high flying life by bringing them to the castle of your friend, the Duchess.

6. Finally, stay away from pills and pesticides... we can't afford to lose another of fashion's greatest visionary whack jobs.

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