I'm infatuated with old New York socialites, Ladies like Barbara Hutton ( Woolworth heiress), Brenda Frazier ( American Debutante), Gloria Vanderbilt (Daughter of railroad heir Reginald Claypoole Vanderbilt), and Doris Duke ( daughter of a tobacco tycoon). But there is one that I just can't get enough of reading about or seeing her old pictures; Barbara "Babe" Cushing Mortimer Paley was an American socialite and style icon. She was known by the popular nickname "Babe" for most of her life. She was named to the International Best Dressed List Hall of Fame in 1958. That's International people...not a local thing!
Babe's father was a world-renowned brain surgeon Dr. Harvey Cushing who was professor of surgery at Johns Hopkins, Harvard and Yale. Her sister Minnie Cushing was the second wife to Vincent Astor (Yes, The famous Astor Family), and her sister Betsy Cushing married James Roosevelt ( Yes, of son of President Roosevelt). But that isn't as cool as her job as a fashion editor for Vogue magazine. Having her position in society and being so high profile the designers gave her clothes to wear. In 1941, Time magazine voted her second best dressed women in the world!
Her personal style was inspirational to thousands of women who tried to copy her, but as Bill Blass once observed, "I never saw her not grab any ones attention, the hair, the makeup, the crispness. You were never conscious of what she was wearing; you noticed Babe and nothing else."