The rise and fall of Halston, the man who redefined American fashion


The new documentary about the enigmatic fashion designer Roy Halston Frowick titled ‘Halston’ features a scene in which his former assistance Tom Fallon shares a story that shocked everyone.

Halston before becoming a household name in the early 1960s was invited at his client’s house for a meal where two men refused to be seated until Halston and other diners were removed from the table.

I just need you to understand that you and I could not hope to be anything more than trained fa**ot poodles to jump through the hoops of rich people” recalled Tom.

Halston proved his pessimism wrong and became the single most influential figure in the history of American Fashion.

halston image
Credit: Robin Platzer/The LIFE Images Collection/The LIFE Images Collection via G

The first superstar fashion designer

It was showcased in the documentary how Halston mixed high fashion with low and also produced a perfume range, diffusion line as well as a brand extension bearing his name.

Halston created a style for the youthful energy of disco generations, becoming the decade’s “quintessential designer” says Patricia Mears.

He was the great shooting star of fashion in the 1970s and early 1980s, but he burned out very quickly too,” says Mears, who curated the designer’s work in the 2015 FIT show, “Yves Saint Laurent + Halston: Fashioning the ’70s.”

Credit: SAUER Jean-Claude/Paris Match Archive/Paris Match via Getty Images

Dancing Clothes

Minelli who is Halston’s close friend says “His clothes danced with you!”

Halston designed a pillbox hat for Jackie Kennedy who wore it at her husband’s presidential inauguration. Though Halston became America’s Best Known Designer, yet he hand designed the clothes and micro-managed his empire.

halston image
Credit: John Preito/Denver Post/Denver Post via Getty Images

An enduring legacy

The second stage of the film includes the premature death of Halston because of AIDS-related complications and how he disappeared from the industry. The brand now called ‘Halston Heritage’ has been sold numerous times.

“In some ways, we see this as a tragic tale,” says Mears. “But it’s also a good tale, I think, to tell.”

halston image
Credit: SAUER Jean-Claude/Paris Match Archive/Paris Match via Getty Images


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