The October 7 Luxury Accessories and Vintage Fashion auction at Leslie Hindman Auctioneers will feature a special session of couture garments from the collection of Ms. Sue Blair, an international model and associate for important designers. Having broken into the industry in Paris when John Fairchild of Women’s Wear Daily introduced her to Jules Francois Crahay, the then head designer for Nina Ricci and later Lanvin, Ms. Blair went on to rub elbows with some of fashion’s biggest names throughout her career.
Ms. Blair moved to both Paris and Jerusalem with her husband who had worked as the foreign correspondent and bureau chief for The New York Times. In Paris she became the “muse” of Jules Francois Crahay and so began a great friendship that lasted until his death in 1988. While living in Jerusalem, Ms. Blair maintained her modeling career, flying to Paris for one week each month. It was then that she began collecting couture clothing.
In the late 1970s Ms. Blair worked for designer Thea Porter and began collecting her clothing. When she moved back to New York in the early 1980s, John Fairchild introduced her to Bill Blass where she worked as his personal assistant for eight years before moving back to Kansas City to care for her ailing mother. Her socialite status in New York prompted her to collect many Blass ensembles that captured the eye-catching sparkle of his evening clothes.