A life of extreme tragedy and remarkable inspiration, the story of Isabella Blow is a dramatic and compelling tale of a courageous icon.
Isabella Blow was the epitome of English eccentricity. A legendary figure in the fashion world, she nurtured and championed the talent of some of fashion’s most recognisable and important figures, all the time hiding her own personal unhappiness and severe depression. The news of her tragic death in 2007, aged 48, shocked the international fashion world.
Her thirty year career in fashion began as Anna Wintour's assistant at American Vogue, and took in stints as fashion director of Tatler and Fashion Editor of The Sunday Times Magazine. But she is perhaps best-known for the iconic images of her in Philip Treacy's hats, the first of two designers to launch his career from the basement of Isabella and Detmar Blow's house. With similar passion and verve, Isabella enthusiastically displayed her admiration for young designer Alexander McQueen, buying his entire first collection after he graduated from Central St Martins, in a move that many believe launched his career.
Detmar Blow was engaged to Isabella sixteen days after they first met in 1988, and the couple remained married until her death. In this visually stunning portrait, Detmar and Tom reveal the truth about the intriguing world of Isabella, providing incredible behind-the-scenes insight into the world of fashion and high-society, as well as tracing her ancestry and early childhood, offering a fresh and penetrating look at her domestic life, and celebrating her incredible achievements.
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"One of the most original and influential people of the twentieth century to me and many others." --Alexander McQueen
With a career spanning thirty years in fashion, as an influential voice at Vogue, Tatler, and The Sunday Times Magazine--as well as a legacy as one of the industry's kingmakers for discovering Philip Treacy, Alexander McQueen, Sophie Dahl, and Hussein Chalayan--Isabella Blow had been a pillar of couture culture until her suicide in 2007 left the fashion world mourning one of its finest friends and patrons. Blow by Blow is a captivating journey through Issie's life, a one-of-a-kind look at her unforgettable impact on the fashion world, and a moving exploration of her inspiring and ultimately tragic tale.
‘Over the years, whenever Issy would call me up to urge me to see someone new, I would do it because she thought it was important.’ - Anna Wintour, Editor-in-Chief, American Vogue
‘You were a one off, a genius friend, your own creation in a world of copycats and I will miss you for the rest of my life.’ - Rupert Everett, in his eulogy at Isabella Blow’s funeral
‘She was original, impactful, generous-minded and spotted some of the greatest talents.’ - Geordie Greig, Editor of the Evening Standard and formerly editor of Tatler
‘She was the most intelligent and creative person in fashion. In many ways she was the British queen of fashion. She was intoxicating. You could never get enough of her. She was a free spirit.’ - Philip Treacy
‘She discovered Sophie Dahl sobbing in a doorway; she bought Alexander McQueen's entire degree show, and had Philip Treacy design her wedding hat when she married Detmar Blow in 1988 - as well as being credited with discovering Hussein Chalayan and Stella Tennant.’ - Vogue
‘Mourned the world over by an industry that has lost a Muse with whom there was never a dull moment.’ - Daily Mail
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