Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Be my Guest

CZ Guest, fashion icon and society hostess.

From an article by Natasha Wood at My Luscious Life:
Born Lucy Douglas Cochrane in in Boston, Massachusetts to an investment banker and his wife, her brother started calling her “Sissy” which translated into “CZ” with time.

Although known primarily for being a fashionista and hostess to the rich and famous, she dabbled in acting in her early years, appearing in the famous Ziegfeld Follies, and later became a gardener, writer, horsewoman and designer.

Upon marrying Anglo-American polo player Winston Guest in 1947 at Ernest Hemingway‘s home in Havana, Cuba, she joined a formidable family, descended from the Dukes of Marlborough whose ancestral home is Blenheim Palace...
Her marital family was related both to Winston Churchill and Diana, Princess of Wales, but their connections encompassed many more of the great and the good of the 20th century than that. The Duke and Duchess of Windsor were the godparents of their children. Truman Capote referred to CZ as one of his “Swans”.

The Guests knew everyone who was anyone, including Cecil Beaton, Sawai Man Singh II of Jaipur, Barbara Hutton, Diana Vreeland, Babe Paley and William S. Paley, Gloria Guinness and Thomas “Loel” Guinness, Diego Rivera, Salvador Dalí, Kenneth Paul Block and Andy Warhol. CZ even frequented Studio 54!

A socialite's life, indeed.

"Be polite, meet everybody, and have a wonderful time."

"I like the classic look. Keep it simple. There's only so much you can wear."

"Style is about surviving, having been through a lot, and making it look easy."

CZ Guest (19th February 1920 - 8th November 2003)


  1. Footnote: "...her brother started calling her “Sissy” which translated into “CZ” with time" - of course, this onomatopoeia does not work in British English, where we use the pronunciation "Zed" not "Zee"... Jx

  2. She was great and one of the last socialite/models who carried off both roles with dignity. She wore Mainbocher couture to lovely and always understated effect.

    1. She certainly was - and she designed and sold a lilac gardener’s jumpsuit and a fragrant insect repellent. Now that's camp! Jx


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