FORT WAYNE, Ind. – Bill Blass would have been 101 years old today. In honor of his Blasstastic life, Bill Blass Legacy, Inc. will continue to share his story with Fort Wayne and the world.
Downtown Fort Wayne Mural: Working with Alex Hall from Art This Way, a program of Downtown Fort Wayne, Bill Blass Legacy, Inc. selected an Indiana artist and will invest in a Bill Blass Mural. The mural, just as creative and classy as Bill Blass, will be located in Bill Blass Runway, part of the Double Plus alleyway network in Downtown Fort Wayne. Funding for Art This Way is provided by TriCore. Funding for this project will be provided by Bill Blass Legacy, Inc.
Ghost Army Exhibit: Working with Eric Johnson from the Veteran’s National Memorial Shrine and Museum, Bill Blass Legacy, Inc. recently unveiled a new Ghost Army interactive exhibit featuring our hometown hero Bill Blass. The new War Museum is located at 2122 O’Day Road and is a wonderful tribute to those who served our country in the military.
Permanent Electronic Archive at the Allen County Public Library (ACPL): Working with Curt Witcher and Special Collections, Bill Blass Legacy, Inc. is creating a feature in the library’s Community Album highlighting Bill Blass, his Fort Wayne childhood, WWII Ghost Army service and a 50-year fashion career. Look in the “research” tab on the ACPL website!
83 Entrepreneurs at South Side High School (SSHS): Working with SSHS Principal Zachary Harl and Steve Franks from Believe in a Dream, Bill Blass Legacy, Inc. hosted an entrepreneur contest at SSHS. In May, the organization awarded six students, recognizing their Blasstastic dreams. Students continue to work with Believe in a Dream to launch their ideas.
The Bill Blass Story: Bill Blass was born and raised in Fort Wayne, Indiana. He grew up on South Calhoun Street and graduated from South Side High School in 1940. While in high school, he dreamed of being a fashion designer and sold his sketches to a dress manufacturer in New York. Bill served in the Ghost Army in World War II. The Ghost Army was a U.S. Army unit that used inflatable tanks, sound effects, radio trickery and imagination to fool the Germans on the battlefields of Europe. Bill Blass and other members of the Ghost Army were officially recognized with the award of a Congressional Gold Medal in 2022. Bill Blass went on to become a world-famous fashion designer. During his 50-year entrepreneurial fashion career, he designed clothing for celebrities, First Ladies and men and women around the globe. He received over 40 fashion-related awards, including lifetime achievement awards. After his death, Indiana University received an unexpected $1 million donation, which continues to fund IU fashion programs.
In 2022, a 501(c)3 nonprofit was formed by a group of Fort Wayne Bill Blass enthusiasts, Bill Blass Legacy, Inc. The purpose of the nonprofit is to electronically archive and honor the life of Fort Wayne native Bill Blass.
For Immediate Release: Thursday, June 22, 2023
Downtown Fort Wayne Mural Contact: Alexandra Hall, Director of Art This Way, 260-417-5925, Alex@DowntownFortWayne.com
Bill Blass Legacy, Inc. Contact: Kathy Carrier, Owner & CEO of Briljent, 260-403-6746, KCarrier@Briljent.com