Mr. Blackwell: bad fashion's assassin
- August 11, 2008 5:06 PM |
- By Arts Online
Avril Lavigne, whose eyeliner excesses inspired one of Mr. Blackwell's acid quips. (MJ Kim/Getty Images)
Do you love secretly (or not-so-secretly) checking out those catty online photo galleries of celeb fashion faux pas? If so, spare a thought for the king of the cats, Mr. Blackwell. The 85-year-old fashion designer-turned-critic, fabled for his pithy put-downs of badly clad stars, is currently in hospital after suffering a fall.
Long before the bitchy likes of TMZ and Go Fug Yourself, Mr. Blackwell (first name: Richard) was tartly assessing the dubious fashion sense of the rich and famous in his annual 10 Worst Dressed list – knocking everyone from 1960s Goldie Hawn ("a peeled grape on the end of a pipe cleaner") to a 1990s Jennifer Aniston ("Brad Pitt looks better in a dress than she does") to his perennial target, the British Royals (his snippy 2006 assessment of Camilla Parker-Bowles? "A parakeet from the Jurassic age.")
Actually, the guy wasn't all nasty (he also issues a "Fabulous Fashion Independents" list) and his barbs were usually delivered with loads of arch alliteration in laughably corny verse. Sample from 2007, commenting on Avril Lavigne: "Gothic makeup courtesy the mad spatula / Fashions provided by… The house of Dracula!" (How could anyone be upset with that? It's kinda like being dissed by your granddad.) Blackwell could even be a softy – he left a troubled Britney Spears off last year's list because he felt she'd suffered enough slagging for her public behaviour. (If you want to see his full list for 2007, click here.)
Maybe all of us, stars or otherwise, would commit fewer sartorial blunders – like, say, wearing brown Crocs with a blue tracksuit – if we just took a moment to look in the mirror and ask, "What would Mr. Blackwell say?"
– Martin Morrow
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