Love, Always in Fashion
Music legend David Bowie may have left a gaping hole in modern history with his passing, but his capacity for living a life filled creativity, humour and certainly love for his wife of 24 years Iman will inspire true romantics to continue believing. We turn the spotlight on famous couples showing their love through fashion
DAVID BOWIE + IMAN ADBULMAJID
“You would think that a rock star being married to a supermodel would be one of the greatest things in the world. It is.” — David Bowie
The love affair between legendary rockstar David Bowie and his supermodel wife, Iman Abdulmajid, began in 1990 when they met one another at a dinner party. The attraction, according to Bowie, was “immediate and all-encompassing”. They got married in 1992 and it lasted till the end of Bowie’s life, 24 years later.
“David doesn’t fight. He is English, so he just stays quiet. I’m the screamer,” she said. “Then he always makes me laugh. It’s like cabaret. I keep him entertained too. I still fancy him — totally! After all these years.” — Iman
While Iman has walked some of the best runway shows for top designers and becoming the muse for many prominent brands including Halston, Gianni Versace, Calvin Klein and Issey Miyake, Bowie, with his larger than life personas, has inspired countless designers to build collections around him.
With his Ziggy Stardust alter ego, Bowie was the poster boy for glam-rock. For instance, the Jean Paul Gaultier spring/summer 2013 show paid tribute to Ziggy, with the designer sending out models onto the runway in iconic Bowie looks and Ziggy Stardust wigs.
Former Balmain designer, Christophe Decarnin, created a collection in 2011 that was inspired by Bowie’s Aladdin Sane persona, with a crystal-encrusted jumpsuit being the standout from the collection.
WALLIS SIMPSON + EDWARD, DUKE OF WINDSOR
“My husband gave up everything for me. I’m not a beautiful woman. I’m nothing to look at, so the only thing I can do is dress better than anyone else. ” — Wallis Simpson
If there was ever a modern-day fairy tale romance, it will be that of Wallis Simpson and her Prince Charming Edward (who was, for a very brief moment, the King of England). The storyline was sweet and simple: he gave up his crown and abdicated his throne for the woman that he loved. They were later conferred the titles of Duke and Duchess of Windsor.
Wallis Simpson was dressed in Mainbocher at her wedding to Prince Edward, Duke of Windsor in 1937. The soft grey-blue crepe dress was later known as “Wallis blue”. Her matching blue straw hat by Parisian milliner Caroline Reboux had a halo effect, with pale blue tulle and her matching gloves created from the same blue silk crepe as her dress. More than 25 years after the event, it was still regarded as “one of the most photographed, most copied dresses of modern times”.
While Vogue once described Edward as “one of those people who really have glamour”, Wallis Simpson was known to be a style and fashion icon till today. For his 2011-2012 fall/winter collection, Roland Mouret designed a gold, embossed silk maxi dress inspired by the Duchess.
“Her clothes were as challenging as her approach to royal etiquette. When Coco Chanel’s boyish Breton tops and trimmed box jackets were de rigueur, Simpson was trumping the nipped-in waists and corsetry of American couture designer Main Rousseau Bocher.”
Wallis Simpson, as London’s The Guardian once reported, always employed fashion as a weapon. What she wore took on an even greater significance after her marriage to Edward. And while she may not have been the most beautiful woman in the world, she would make up for it by being the best dressed.
At times her attention could seem like it bordered on obsession. At the funeral of the Duke in 1972 – an event when she would have known all the eyes of the world would be on her as she walked next to the Queen Mother – she had Hubert Givenchy stay up all night to perfect the length of her chiffon veil.
A front row regular of Coco Chanel’s greatest rival, Elsa Schiaparelli, she was a regular customer of Christian Dior – another radical artist who’s voluptuous “New Look” caused a sensation when it launched in 1947.
And while she may have been alienated and ostracised by the British royal family, her legacy to fashion continues to amaze and enthral. Since her death, Simpson has become a symbol of female empowerment as well as a style icon.
BLAKE LIVELY + RYAN REYNOLDS
“Everything we do in life we do together. If I’m working on a movie, he helps me with my character; I do the same with him. Picking out a coffee table. What we’re going to eat. He’s a beautiful writer—he’s written a lot of stuff for us. And he’s got a great barometer and he knows me, so he will tell me if it’s not as good as it can be.” — Blake Lively, in Vogue
Who would have thought Gossip Girl x Deadpool would mesh so well together? The pair met while filming The Green Lantern and it wasn’t till a year later after the movie launched when they finally got together – after a double date with their respective partners didn’t work out quite as planned.
In an interview with Eonline, Reynolds revealed “That was the most awkward date for their respective probably because we were just like fireworks coming across (laughing). It was weird at first but we were buddies for a long time. I think it’s the best way to have a relationship is to start as friends.”
As Reynolds continues to enjoy a successful Hollywood career while juggling endorsement deals such as being the face of L’Oréal’s Men Expert line, Lively is not one to rest on her laurels even with a baby on the way.
Post-Gossip Girl, the actress continues to make the headlines with movies, her red carpet choices, sartorial quips and entrepreneurial stints. While pregnant with their 2nd child, she also went on a promotional tour at Cannes for her latest movie Café Society, in custom pieces from Atelier Versace and Giambattista Valli no less.
By embracing her status as a style icon, Lively’s judicious public appearances throughout pregnancy have invariably sealed her reputation as a style icon. Whether it’s an outing at the White House in Ralph & Russo or stunning in a pink Burberry gown at the fashion circuit’s event du jour The Met Gala, there’s hardly an occasion where she’s not photographed looking every bit the resplendent style queen she has become.
A version of this article originally appeared on The Fifth Collection