“Dressed to kill”
As we mentioned when we posted the original story, today is the day that the BBC’s History magazine announced the name of the individual who received the most votes in their “Who’s the best-dressed Briton in history?” poll.
Here’s a bit from the site.
David Bowie has been voted the best-dressed Briton in history in a recent poll by BBC History Magazine, winning the title with 48.5 per cent of the votes. Bowie was one of 10 individuals nominated by leading academics and fashion experts in the October issue of BBC History Magazine for their sartorial style and impact on British fashion history.
David Bowie was nominated by designer Wayne Hemingway. Speaking to historyextra about why he believes Bowie deserves to win, Hemingway said:
"Bowie has profoundly influenced so many of us. The first concert I went to on my own was David Bowie’s Aladdin Sane tour at King George’s Hall in Blackburn in 1973.
After the gig, I went out, got my hair 'feathered', bought a tight-fitting canary yellow T-shirt from Clobber and Bowie's album from Ames Record Bar. The next day we read in the Evening Telegraph that he [Bowie] had been banned from Blackburn for wearing one of his costume changes – the white sumo knickers. We all wanted to get banned too.
Here was a creative genius who understood art and design, looked cool, inspired us and upset the establishment. All these attributes lead to things that drive humankind forward… change."
In fairness it’s possible that the other nine nominees don't have quite the online fanbase that David Bowie enjoys.
When we posted the story Bowie had 25% of the vote that almost doubled to 48.5% over the following days. So thanks for your support.
Having said that, one of the other contenders has a formidable online presence in The Richard III Society.
We’ll leave you with the best-dressed Briton shortlist and results:
1. David Bowie - 48.5 per cent
Championed by Wayne Hemingway, designer.
2. Elizabeth I - 13.6 per cent
Championed by Ulinka Rublack, author of Dressing Up: Cultural Identity in Renaissance Europe.
3. Georgiana Cavendish, Duchess of Devonshire - 9.5 per cent
Championed by Katy Werlin, fashion and textile historian specialising in the early modern period.
4. George 'Beau' Brummell - 8.4 per cent
Championed by Rachel Dickens, deputy art editor of BBC History Magazine.
5. Queen Alexandra - 7.1 per cent
Championed by Kate Strasdin, assistant curator at the Totnes Fashion and Textile Museum, Devon, and associate lecturer at Falmouth University.
6. Anne Messel - 5.3 per cent
Championed by Amy de la Haye, professor of dress history and curatorship at London College of Fashion.
7. Henry III - 2.5 per cent
Championed by Dr Benjamin Wild, historian of men's fashion and guest lecturer at the Condé Nast College of Fashion & Design.
8. Ellen Terry - 2.2 per cent
Championed by Veronica Isaac, assistant curator in the Department of Theatre and Performance at the V&A, London.
9. Charles James Fox - 1.6 per cent
Championed by Dr Hannah Greig, lecturer in early modern history at the University of York and author of The Beau Monde: Fashionable Society in Georgian London.
10. Samuel Pepys - 1.3 per cent
Championed by Anna Reynolds, curator of paintings for the Royal Collection Trust and curator of the current exhibition, In Fine Style: The Art of Tudor and Stuart Fashion, at the Queen's Gallery, London.