C.Z.-Guest

C is for C.Z. Guest. Photograph by Clifford Coffin, 1950

A true all-American icon, whether she was in Mainbocher or a plain white t-shirt and shorts.

C.Z. Guest (1920-2003), née Lucille Douglas Cochrane. American socialite, columnist, and fashion designer. Photographed in 1937, wearing a Mainbocher dress.

“She dreads overdressing as she would adders fanged,” Vogue observed. Unlike many of her set, who gravitated to the latest fripperies from Paris, Guest eschewed both frills and trends, cultivating instead an aura of polished refinement. “She has firm, even inflexible ideas about how she looks and what suits her… . She buys nothing solely, or even primarily, because it is ‘fashionable,’ ” the magazine noted.