How I remember Whitney Houston

Whitney Houston

As we learned of Whitney Houston’s passing last weekend we like many of you out there felt an overwhelming shock and genuine sympathy for the fallen star for her voice was like no other. And although we got to see her through her turbulent years and were faced with an explicit reminder of the devastation drugs can take on one’s life, we will miss her fiery demeanor and  explosive performances.

Brad Boles looks back at their time together. -N.H.

The unexpected that comes along in life can work in funny ways sometimes. Just a week ago I received a call from Whitney Houston asking to meet as she wanted me to work on an interior design project. She was upbeat and looking to the future.

Just this Saturday, I was shocked and devastated to be in attendance at her funeral…

The world’s press has had a field day with the passing of Whitney Houston; rehashing every bad hair day or fashion mistake, every stumble & fall. The first time I met Whitney was with Clive Davis, her lifelong mentor.  I was mesmerized by her undeniable beauty and, believe me, if you had ever seen her in person you’d know what I’m talking about.  She was dazzling beyond belief.

Although she was featured in a slew of iconic 80’s fashion images with a body and verve that was dynamic and radiant, Nippy, as I knew her, was not a fashion icon. In fact, she made some really bad choices every so often throughout her career as she dressed by instinct. Strangely enough, she used some of the world’s top stylists and still couldn’t get it right all the time.

Then she met Marc Bouwer and overnight Nippy became a diva appearing before the world in a body-hugging evening gown. Ever since, I’ve associated her leggy beauty with gowns. Amazingly, she never played the role of diva with her friends and would call out of the blue just to chat.

As a make-up artist I was amazed at how humble Nippy was when it came to her beauty routine. Talk to any make-up artist that she ever worked with, and hands down they’ll all say the same thing: “mesmerizing!” So let’s all remember her for the legend she will remain with a voice and sense of delivery that made her a true original. We all stumble & fall from time to time, it’s a part of any given person’s life to have ups & downs and with her celebrity came an unfortunate heavy-handed gaze from the media. I guess this last time she just didn’t have the strength to carry on.  Rest in peace my friend! — Brad Boles