Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Daphne Guinness, My Hero

It's been three years since Isabella Blow’s death, and it was recently decided that her entire wardrobe would be auctioned off by Christies in order to raise funds to pay off all her debts. Her fashion archive includes some of John Galliano’s early work, pieces by Hussein Chalayan and Giles Deacon and over fifty hats by Philip Treacy. Alexander McQueen makes up for the largest portion of her collection, consisting of well over ninety of his outfits.

While it's understandable that Isabella's debt's have put her family in a financially strenuous situation, the notion of this auction was still completely horrifying to me. The idea that her life's collection (her life's work in essence) would be picked through and spread thin amongst who know how many people was unsettling. To clarify, I never knew her, but was a huge admirer of everything she did and stood for. In my teens I'd scour news stands looking for photos of what ensembles she'd put together and articles on people and designers she thought were note worthy. Those who didn't follow Isabella's life and career wouldn't understand the issue with this type of auction.

So in mid June when I read that Daphne Guinness had put a stop to the sale and purchased Isabella's entire collection her self, a sense of relief came over me. Daphne being a very close, old friend of Isabella's understood the urgency of the situation better then any living person could. “The auction would not be merely a sale of clothes; it would be a sale of what was left of Issie, and the carrion crows would gather and take away her essence forever. It needs to be kept whole, it is like a diary, a journey of a life, and a living embodiment of the dearest, most extraordinary friend.”

On July 3rd, Daphne wrote an article for the Financial Times explaining in depth why she had to call the auction off. It is a must read in my opinion.

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