lundi 31 octobre 2011

This Much I Issie Blow

Vintage food for thought today, from the inimitable, fabulous and brilliant late Isabella Blow.  This was her contribution a few years ago to the Guardian's regular 'This Much I Know' feature.  Hilarious, self-aware and occasionally even useful, at the time I saved it to turn to for advice in future moments of crisis.

  • A hat is like cosmetic surgery, you will always look better. It's one of the reasons why in the past everyone wore a hat - if you didn’t you'd be considered the equivalent of what I am today, an alien.
  • Put your bosom on the shelf and you won't stay on the shelf for very long. If you have a good chest, get it out for summer. Similarly, if you have a small waist, wear a wide belt. For winter, it's more about refinement and strictness.
  • I look back at the times I used to change outfits four times a day with a sense of wonder. These days I can barely manage to get changed once.
  • I'm a love addict. If someone speaks to me in a certain way, with a certain charm, they've got the job.
  • I love the chav, it's brand obsession and it's tremendous fun. They're like cartoon characters. When you spot them in the street you always have a really good laugh. Surely they don't take themselves seriously?
  • I usually take advice from my sister, even though she's younger than me. 'You absolutely must wear a sports bra,' she said to me when she heard I was taking up tennis. And she asked me to leave Christie's this morning - she works there, and I was there to buy a painting with Philip Treacy. She thought my cleavage inappropriate for an auction house.
  • There's no point clomping round like a duck in flat shoes. I buy three pairs of shoes a year, Manolos preferably. I can only afford three pairs.
  • There are so many stories about my family, it makes my head spin. My grandfather, Sir Henry 'Jock' Delves Broughton, was an alleged murderer who committed suicide by injecting himself with heroin, and my grandmother listed herself in Who's Who as a one-time cannibal. I'm not sure if that's true, but she definitely caught the biggest tuna fish ever caught in European waters.
  • Tracksuit bottoms for lunch, dinner, or in fact any time except for sport are completely unacceptable. You can't see a person's figure in them, for starters.
  • If I had my time again perhaps I'd try instant gratification.
  • I've always gone for seduction - a three-month trial period where I see someone every day, and by the end of it you just explode. That's my style.
  • It makes me livid to think about the clothes I've lost at the dry cleaners. Now I've got tops but not bottoms, or bottoms without tops. Absolutely maddening.
  • I need photographers. Thank God they have the ability to photograph the clothes. They keep me alive.
  • Being neurotic is bad for managing your life, but it keeps you thin. That's why I'm a size 8.
  • It's a massive shock to be disinherited. My father was tremendously wealthy, so I was used to money. I knew he was disappointed in me - he thought Tatler was a magazine for drug dealers, for goodness sake - but I didn't expect to be left only £5,000. I can still hardly speak about it.
  • You can't wear gloss lipstick if you're a smoker, like me. It all comes off. Anyway, if you're painting your face there's something appropriate about painting on your red lips with proper lipstick.
  • The shows are as exhausting as everyone says. 'Treat yourself like a racehorse before,' a friend advised me, but I never manage to. I do have a faith healer though. He plays with my energy and makes me more positive. He's my rock, I suppose. But I have to go all the way to Worthing once a week. Or is it Woking?
  • In life you begin with a charm bracelet, and gradually the charms drop off. Being charming, being charmed, I adore it all. An American ex-lover rang me out of the blue recently and said, 'I'm driving past Vogue house and it made me think of you.' How gorgeous. You need charm more and more as you get older.
  • It's so hard when you can't help discovering people. Eventually you think, what do I have for myself?
  • Philip Treacy, Alexander McQueen, Sophie Dahl - I discovered them all. But I don't really want to discover anyone ever again.
  • Great fashion talents come around every 10 years. There will never be another Alexander McQueen, but there will be another fabulous talent. I wish they were like flowers and you could stick them in a vase, but it doesn't work like that.

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