Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Slum Lady Jane-Fashion Icon

slum-lady-jane

I love to hear how “Baby” Jane Holzer is such an Icon of Fashion.
This from WWD;
Oh, Baby!
Baby Jane Holzer, that is. She was one of the inspirations for John Galliano's very pretty fall collection for Christian Dior, which skillfully mixed glamour and restraint. The big hair and ladylike accessories were all part of the fun. Here, a look that would have delighted Holzer in the Sixties, a flared fur coat,
worn with short leather gloves and a top-handle bag.
She was also one of the worst slumlords of the Lower East Side, pre- gentrification. I know, I lived in one of her buildings. Where, on the first of every month the “managing agent” this skeevy, little, gimpy guy named Jesse, along with a big, (I mean huge!) “maintenance” guy, would come through the building knocking on doors to collect the rent - with Baseball Bats!

One night I left the building, which had a permanently installed dealer, that no amount of tenant & police complaints could dislodge, (he was useful, kept in place to keep turnover high) at Norfolk and Stanton, to go visit a friend uptown. A taxi that was driving past on Stanton did the sharpest K turn ever to meet me as I walked to the corner and the driver stuck his head out the window... “Get In, I’ll take you where ever you need to go- no charge, you shouldn’t be walking around here.” He was a young white guy and knew the building I’d come out of, which was why he stopped. Turned out he’d lived with his girlfriend a few blocks further East in another Holzer drug building. They’d come home from a matinee one afternoon only to see a 12 year old neighbor’s brains get blown out right in front of them - in the middle of the afternoon!

They’d begged Baby Jane (who still wore her hair in the above pictured bouffant, rather un-successfully, I might add) to move them into one of her “nice” i.e.: dealer free buildings, above Houston. (In my in building we'd all been paying illegally inflated rents & eventually went on rent strike) But, No Go. They were afraid for their lives! A kid had been murdered 2 feet away from them! They were only able to get a relocation after they’d threatened to go public with her slum lady lord activities below Houston. Did the trick!
Such a Fashion Icon....

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