Isaac’s Insights

By  July 23, 2009

isaacmizrahiWe mentioned a while back that the Metropolitan Museum of Art would be showing Unzipped as part of a film series in conjunction with the current Costume Institute exhibition, The Model as Muse: Embodying Fashion. The film, directed by Douglas Keeve back in 1995, follows the creative and frenetic world of Isaac Mizrahi as he prepares a new collection for the runway—and prior to the screening last night, the designer himself was present for a brief discussion of the film, as well as what he’s doing now.

The conversation ranged from Isaac’s first show to his collaboration with Liz Claiborne to his love for “the real woman.” The designer had a lot to say about the last one, and he emphasized the importance of embracing and loving real people. Here’s his take the idealized version of women:

To me, it’s like, “Oh, poor model, poor thing.” That’s how I think now—”Oh, she’s so pretty, poor thing.” Because where I am in my life, I think… New York Magazine does a thing about sexy people, and they’re all tan and they’re wearing big high heels and have big hair and they’re young, and I think, “Oh, those poor things.” What’s less sexy than that to me? What is less sexy than that? I mean it! … I would much rather be a real person now than a B model, anyways—a tall, sexy 20-year-old girl. God forbid!

It’s easy to see how Isaac achieved his celebrity status—the vibrant and vivacious designer had the audience smiling from the moment he emerged on stage in an all-black ensemble completed by a pair of “Michael Jordan flip flops” (side note: watch this entry of Isaac’s video blog to learn about “comfort shoe irony”) that showed off his pretty “cantaloupe” pedicure. There’s also something so approachable and engaging about him that we almost (almost) forgot that he’s a world-renowned fashion designer and current co-host of Bravo TV’s The Fashion Show. In an ideal world, we’d have him as a best friend and personal style consultant all rolled into one.

If you haven’t seen Unzipped, we highly recommend you do—it’s a personal and insightful visit into Isaac’s world, and we enjoyed literally every second of it. And for more Isaac, visit We particularly enjoy his video blog!