Society Swan Deeda Blair Lifts The Veil On Her Signature Style In Her First Book

by Christie Grimm · September 22, 2022

    While the Billy Baldwin decorated home of celebrated D.C. doyenne Deeda Blair has been widely explored by magazines, and while her classic grey-to-black bouffant and penchant for couture has been on grand display for decades at high society's chicest soirées, much of the socialite turned wildly successful medical research advocate's day-to-day life and personal take on taste has been a mystery.

    Next month, with the publication of her first book, Deeda Blair: Food, Flowers, & Fantasy, the last of America's true swans welcomes you to take a seat at six "fantasy meals" held inside her impeccably appointed Sutton Place apartment. 

    From her table setting style to her haute, creative cuisine to her timeless fashion, the book is sure to be the ultimate coffee table status symbol.

    Currently hitting the press in anticipation of the book's publication, Deeda is dropping all kinds of delicious quotes and intriguing insights into her elegant life. 

    When prompted by W Magazine to reveal who does her iconic hairstyle - "Ha, you’re really asking? Well, I’ll answer: It’s a Czech woman in a neighborhood shop. She’s younger than I am, but she’s elderly. She puts in the rollers, and I sit under the dryer. This is probably what your grandmother did. And I’ve kept the same hairstyle because in between appointments, I can do it myself. I put in five warm rollers before you came over today."

    In an interview with Harper's Bazaar, she shared a few of her culinary tips and tricks. "I am, more than I should be, interested in food. I like to serve things that are not frequently served. A few are kind of inventions. I like to come up with things that are unexpected. Someone came over the other night, and I had a thick slice of a good tomato, and then scallions and crème fraîche and paddlefish roe. And then a shower of watercress. People said they’ve never had tomato with caviar before, and it’s a very good combination. I always plan menus with dessert first. Don’t you? I don’t like desserts that look as though they came from a fancy bakery. I like them to look pretty different. I have a wonderful mold that swirls around, and it’s like a pyramid. I had the idea to fill it with ice cream and then scoop the inside out and fill that with ground chocolate, and then we put chocolate lace on the outside. And it’s spectacular looking, but it looks natural."

    In the same piece she also mused on the beginning of her life in couture, as well as her big fashion regret!

    "My parents took me on two separate trips around the world, and I always went to Paris first, just to have time to walk and go to bookstores and museums. I found that when  I was in my 20s, I could fit the [same sizes as the] models, so I would go to Balenciaga and Givenchy. I would often have to wait two months to get [the clothes], but it was worth it. There’s something, once you put on a couture suit or couture dress—you know that it is going to stay in perfect order and look great because you’ve had three fittings, you’ve adjusted it, and they’ve adjusted it.

    "I would always say, 'I’d like to make it not exactly like the model,' and Hubert was fine with that. I didn’t have it so easily with Balenciaga. But I never got bored with wearing [the clothes] over and over again because they were just so much better. I don’t think there’s anything that wasn’t worn for three or four and sometimes for 10 or 12 years. It’s a matter of not being too observable, you know? What I do regret is the number I’ve given to museums and wish I had now. Suddenly nobody’s getting dressed."

    Find your signature coiff and stick to it, always plan your menus starting with dessert, and never donate your outfits to a museum! 

    Wise words to live by, no?

    [Photos via @hamishbowles, @adamlippes]