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Tom Ford’s husband Richard Buckley’s ‘last article’ written before his death at 72 

Tom Ford’s late husband, fashion journalist Richard Buckley’s ‘last article’ has been published – detailing his relationship with his partner of 35-years before his death aged 72.

Mr Buckley, who secretly married American fashion designer and filmmaker Mr Ford, 60, in 2014 after 27 years of dating, passed away peacefully from natural causes at their Los Angeles home earlier this month after battling prolonged illness. 

Specific details surrounding Mr Buckley’s death have not yet been released.

The writer, who met Mr Ford in 1986 at a New York fashion show, paid tribute to his husband in his ‘last contribution to the world of journalism’ for Air Mail.

He revealed he ‘couldn’t enjoy’ his fashion designer partner’s shows ‘even slightly’, would ‘sob’ over bad reviews and tried to never see designs in advance.

Tom Ford’s late husband, fashion journalist Richard Buckley’s ‘last article’ has been published – detailing his relationship with his partner of 35-years before his death aged 72. Pictured, the couple together in 2017

Mr Buckley wrote: ‘I tend to go silent after one of his shows. I do not run backstage and fawn all over him, and I know that hurts his feelings. Truth be told, I am always a total nervous wreck before his presentations, to the point where I physically blank out. 

‘It has always been a real problem for me that I cannot watch Tom’s shows objectively, as I would anyone else’s, or enjoy them even slightly.’

He also described how the first negative review he read about Tom’s first collection in his role as Gucci’s creative director, in spring-summer 1995, left him breaking down while reading it and ‘sobbing all over the page on the kitchen table’.

However, a calm Mr Ford just insisted that bad press ‘was all part of the process’ after his partner called him when still emotional.

Not dealing very well with negative reviews wasn’t the only topic talked about in Mr Buckley’s ‘last article’ – he also revealed that he tried to never see Mr Ford designs in advance.

Tom Ford showcases his Women's Ready-to-Wear collection for Fall/Winter 2020-2021 in Los Angeles. Pictured, a model wearing one of his designs

Tom Ford showcases his Women’s Ready-to-Wear collection for Fall/Winter 2020-2021 in Los Angeles. Pictured, a model wearing one of his designs

‘I’ve found that the few times I have seen things in advance and told him I didn’t like them, they have ultimately succeeded, maybe not from my own subjective aesthetic, but certainly from that of the rest of the press and the buyers who attend the shows,’ said Mr Buckley.

Mr Ford – who is worth $500million – and Mr Buckley shared an eight-year-old son together, Alexander John ‘Jack’ Buckley Ford. 

Mr Buckley was recognised in the professional community for his ‘uncanny ability’ to spot the ‘next big thing’ and had noted several talented designers, musicians, actors and actresses right before they started becoming well known.

He also worked with several other publications including Women’s Wear Daily, Vanity Fair, Mirabella, Italian Vogue, and Vogue Hommes International where he served as editor in chief.   

Mr Ford previously said he knew the journalist was ‘the one’ from the moment they met.

Tom Ford and Richard Buckley attend the premiere of 'Nocturnal Animals' during the 73rd Venice Film Festival at Sala Grande on September 2, 2016 in Venice

Tom Ford and Richard Buckley attend the premiere of ‘Nocturnal Animals’ during the 73rd Venice Film Festival at Sala Grande on September 2, 2016 in Venice

‘I went to a fashion show and this silver-haired guy was staring at me with these piercing water-blue eyes. 

‘It scared me because I absolutely saw and knew my entire future,’ the designer recalled in a 2016 interview ahead of their 30-year-anniversary, MSN reports.

‘About 10 days later, someone asked if [Buckley] was seeing anyone. He said, “No, there was this guy I had seen at a fashion show,” and at that moment, the elevator door opened and there I was. Richard jumps in the elevator and he’s practically tap dancing.’

They welcomed their son, Alexander John ‘Jack’ Buckley Ford, who is turning 9 on Thursday, into their lives in 2012. He was born via a surrogate.

Jack’s life has remained out of the public eye – something Mr Ford swore he would strive for before he even knew he was having a child.

‘If I have a child, you won’t notice that I had a child. Maybe you’ll see it when it’s 18, but I will keep it out of the spotlight,’ he told Marie Claire in 2011.

‘And no one will ever see the child because I certainly wouldn’t use it as a press tool.’ 

They most recently lived in Los Angeles and have also shared residences in London, Richard’s native New York and Tom’s Santa Fe hometown. 

How Tom Ford has built an empire worth $500M through fashion designing and film-making 

Tom Ford, who is credited with turning Gucci into a billion dollar brand, has excelled in both the fashion and film industries, creating an empire that’s worth $500million.

Ford, who attended university in New York, quickly became interested in fashion and took time off of school to work at the Chloé press office in Paris.

After graduation, he was hired by American sportswear designer Cathy Hardwick, before moving to Perry Ellis and Europe. 

The Texas-native became the creative director at Gucci in 1994 – a time when the brand was nearly bankrupt and considered ‘unfashionable.’ 

He is credited with bringing ‘sexiness and glamour’ to Gucci, building the company into a brand that is now worth billions of dollars. He left the company in 2004, citing creative differences with management. 

Following his departure from Gucci, Ford settled in Los Angeles and directed and produced his first film, A Single Man – which garnered an Oscar Academy nomination, Golden Globe nomination and won several awards worldwide.

In 2006, he returned to fashion, launching his own label – Tom Ford Beauty. He started with cosmetics and menswear before growing the brand to include womenswear, which has become his signature and trademark.

He also maintained a presence in the film world, writing and directing ‘Nocturnal Animals’ in 2016. The film was critically acclaimed, winning multiple awards and receiving both Golden Globe and Oscars nominations. 

In March 2019, he became chairman of the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA), succeeding Diane von Furstenberg, who had previously held the position for 13 years. 

He married journalist Richard Buckley in 2014 after the two dated and lived together for 27 years.

The pair share a son, born in September 2012 via surrogacy, called Jack. They elected designer Stella McCartney to serve as the boy’s godmother.  


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