|John B. Fairchild 1927-2015|
Portrait by Irving Penn
I attended his memorial service at the Church of the Ascension in lower Manhattan this morning and Bill Cunningham, the New York Times' photo journalist was front and center snapping photographs of arriving fashion designers and fashionistas.
I wanted to attend and pay my respects because during the publication's halcyon days I was an editor in the fashion department and remember what an exhilarating time it was to work there.
I was.escorted to a seat right in the middle of the fashion luminaries too numerous to mention. Oh yes, Anna Wintour was there and Pierre Berge, the late Yves Saint Laurent patron, spoke, but his inaudible speech was lost to most everyone's ears. Leonard Lauder made up for that with a robust speech in which he talked about how Fairchild was witty, effortlessly stylish, chivalrous and endlessly curious. And how Fairchild changed an industry reporting newspaper into a publication that everyone wanted to read, including women of influence outside the industry, and gave them a glossy magazine called W too. Then in 1983 he founded the original M magazine---the first cover of which featured Prince Philip.
Fairchild had engaging relationships with the late Oscar de la Renta and Bill Blass. He was always in a rush and ready to stir things up.. He coined the phrases Ladies Who Lunch, Jackie O, Beautiful People, and Fashion Victim to name a few. He was the Bard of the 60s, 70s, and 80's, and on a positive note, he had a very keen eye for stirring the industry up like a conductor on the stage of fashion.. Lauder concluded, "An era closes but our John Fairchild is with us forever."
Ta Ta darlings!!! I shall miss my morning coffee reading WWD, but times must move with technology and alas we now have the digital version. fan mail welcome at pollytalknyc.gmail.com. Check in on Polly's Blogs on fashion, poetry from the heart, womendetermined to succeed and visionary men on www.pollytalk.com