Fleur Cowles, Flair editor, painter, dead at 101

Fleur Cowles, writer, painter, friend to the stars and editor of the legendary magazine Flair, died Friday in a nursing home in Sussex, England, at the age of 101. Cowles made a name for herself in the company she kept, including American presidents, Marilyn Monroe, Howard Hughes, Judy Garland, Joan Miró (who designed her dresses), Elizabeth the Queen Mother (described as her “best friend”), and Cary Grant (who was best man in her fourth and last wedding). Cowles’s magazine, Flair, covered fashion, décor, art, travel, and literature and incorporated cut-outs, pop-ups, and removable reproductions of artworks. It became too expensive to print and was discontinued after only 12 issues; nevertheless, Cowles counted it among her crowning achievements. Always on the go in her travels and in her career, Cowles once said, “I have an idea a minute. I’m a born idea myself.”