Feeling (Bill Cunningham) Blue

Photo Eonline.com

Yesterday, during the course of a ceremony that was “short and sweet”, the northeast corner of Fifth Avenue and 57th Street was temporarily renamed, ‘Bill Cunningham Corner’. Something more permanent is in the works, as is Bill’s memorial service, which will most likely take place at the end of the summer, according to Rosemary Feitelberg (“Bill Cunningham Honored with Street Corner Naming, Memorial in the Works”, WWD, July 7th). This places it very close to the start of New York Fashion Week. I have to say that it’s almost unfathomable to think of NYFW without Bill, who was a major presence both inside and outside the shows; his trusty camera at the ready.

When you think of Bill, you immediately think of three things: his camera, his bicycle, and his blue French worker’s jacket. Indeed, even before you saw Bill, you spotted that jacket (in colder weather, he would replace it with a puffer, but again, in that vivid shade of royal blue (or cobalt blue) that really stood out).

In today’s article, Ms. Feitelberg predicted that “Cunningham’s influence on fashion may also soon be seen on the runway”. Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute, weighed in as well, noting, “I think Bill Cunningham’s blue jacket will be uppermost in the minds of many, especially designers. I think the color will definitely play into upcoming fashion. It’s also the kind of color that has had much popularity that it won’t be a hard sell.”

I must admit that long before reading this, I surmised the very same thing. As my way of paying tribute, I thought I’d share some of my favorite royal, cobalt, French blue pieces (some are from fall.winter 2016 collections, and will soon be available; some are online and available right now). They are a mix of ready-to-wear and accessories (necklaces, scarves, bags, shoes), which are admittedly the most perfect (and easiest) way to add a touch of color to an otherwise neutral wardrobe. If the list seems, well, sort of all over the place, that’s not a coincidence, since fashion is nothing if not schizophrenic. And let’s face it; nobody captured the essence of this ongoing schizophrenia better than Bill, in his weekly ‘On the Street’ columns.

Balenciaga royal blue off the shoulder puffer jacket (a chic, admittedly high fashion take on Bill’s winter standby). 

Runway photos Vogue.com

Balenciaga royal blue lurex knit turtleneck and skirt.

Loewe royal blue face mask pendant.

Saint Laurent royal blue fox coat with exaggerated shoulder.

Mansur Gavriel royal blue suede 40mm double strap sandal, $475.
Click here for more info

Mansur Gavriel Italian calf leather circle bag in royal blue, $1095
Click here for more info

Manolo Blahnik royal blue satin Hangisi pump with crystal buckle, $965Click here for more info

Ralph Lauren royal blue cashmere scarf, $995.
Click here for more info

Saint Laurent royal blue calf leather nano ‘Sac de Jour’ tote bag, $2650Click here for more info

J. Crew royal blue vintage cotton t shirt, $19.99
Click her for more info


Marilyn Kirschner

I am a long time fashion editor with 40+ years of experience. As senior market of Harper's Bazaar for 21 years I met and worked with every major fashion designer in the world and covered all of the collections in Paris, London, Milan and New York. I was responsible for overall content, finding and pulling in the best clothes out there, and for formulating ideas and stories.

No Comments Yet

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.