Kinvara Balfour

Lady Kinvara Balfour
Born 1975 (age 4041)
Residence Earls Court, London, United Kingdom
Nationality British
Education BA in English, French & Film[1]
Alma mater
Occupation Creative director, producer, writer, host, public speaker
Spouse(s) Count Riccardo Lanza (m. 2009; div. 2011)
Relatives Sir David Frost
Lady Marcia Fitzalan-Howard
Website Kinvara Balfour on Twitter

Lady Kinvara Clare Rachel Balfour (born 1975) is an English creative director, producer, writer and public speaker. She is the second daughter of Roderick Balfour, 5th Earl of Balfour and Lady Tessa Fitzalan-Howard. Balfour is a niece of the Duke of Norfolk.



Balfour's father is the 5th Earl of Balfour (descended from Eustace_Balfour, brother of the British cabinet minister Gerald Balfour, 2nd Earl of Balfour, and brother of the British Prime Minister Arthur Balfour, 1st Earl of Balfour). Her mother, Lady Tessa Mary Isabel Fitzalan-Howard, is the eldest daughter of the late 17th Duke of Norfolk, Myles Fitzalan-Howard and his wife, the Dowager Duchess of Norfolk (formerly Anne Constable-Maxwell). The title of Duke of Norfolk, Earl of Arundel and Earl Marshal of England, is the oldest and premier British aristocratic title after the Royal Family. The Norfolks are direct descendents of King Edward I and they are also the leading Roman Catholic family in Britain.[2][3] The family seat is Arundel Castle in West Sussex and Carlton Towers in Yorkshire.

Balfour is a niece of British broadcaster and TV presenter Sir David Frost and also a niece of television and stage actress Lady Marsha Fitzalan.


Balfour attended St. Mary's Convent School, South Ascot and completed her degree in English, French and Film at Newcastle University. She completed her post-graduate education at Central School of Speech and Drama.


As playwright

After drama school, Balfour has devoted herself in writing. Her first and best known play Dazed & Abused premiered at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 2004, where it was sold out during its three-week run. It later transferred to London and New York where Diane von Fürstenberg made her studio theatre available for the production. In 2008, Kinvara attended the Royal Court Theatre's Creative Writers Programme after which she conceived her second play, After Invisible.[4]

Balfour has also acted in the Oscar-nominated short film Cashback and the short film Away We Stay. In 2013, she performed in immersive theatre phenomenon You Me Bum Bum Train.

Balfour is an ambassador for London's Royal Court Theatre.

As editor and writer

At 17, Balfour won the Lloyd's Fashion Challenge, a competition in fashion design, out of 30,000 entries nationwide, as judged by Vivienne Westwood. Balfour went on to assist Westwood in her design studio. Balfour then joined British couturier Tomasz Starzewski, whose clients included Diana, Princess of Wales and Sarah, Duchess of York.[5] She has also worked for Norman Hartnell, the British couture house which made both the wedding dress and coronation gowns for Queen Elizabeth II.

After university, Kinvara worked as fashion assistant at Conde Nast. Her appointment as Style Editor at the Saturday Telegraph Magazine followed.

In 2004, Balfour was appointed London Editor for US web phenomenon by owner, entrepreneur Robert Pittman. She launched the brand internationally to mass acclaim. In 2008, was acquired by US media giant Comcast for a reported $125million.[6] In 2012, Balfour launched a digital blog platform for Time Out under new ownership by Peter Dubens. In January 2014, Balfour became Founding Partner of new tech start-up StyleCard,[7] a fashion and lifestyle website 'which features cool, new things and provides exclusive offers on the best of those things'.

As host and public speaker

Balfour is an interpreter of global cultural trends with a focus on fashion and popular culture. She is often considered a "consultant of cool" and a key influencer for international companies and brands.[8] She speaks at events and conferences around the world for corporations including Jimmy Choo, Procter & Gamble, Richemont, Coutts, UBS and Canon.

As of February 2014, Balfour hosts Fashion in Conversation for Apple,[9] a series of interviews in the UK and US with influential names in the industry like Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour,[10] blogger Scott Schuman aka The Sartorialist, fashion designers Zac Posen, Marchesa, Proenza Schouler, Mary Katrantzou, Anya Hindmarch, Manolo Blahnik,[11] "Queen of the Green Carpet" Livia Firth and Academy Award winning costume designer Sandy Powell among others.[12] On 7 April 2014, designer Tom Ford announced his marriage to Richard Buckley during a Fashion in Conversation interview with Balfour.[12][13][14][15][16][17] The series is available worldwide on iTunes.[18][19]

In September 2014, Balfour acted as guest host for The AOL BUILD Speaker Series[20] in New York, interviewing fashion designer Zac Posen,[21][22] Dao-Yi Chow and Maxwell Osborne of Public School,[23] and Jens Grede, Co-Founder of Industrie Magazine, Saturday Group and FRAME Denim.[24]

Balfour has lectured at London's Victoria & Albert Museum.[25]

As producer and creative director

As of 2014, Balfour is working on a fashion-based documentary series about industry visionaries called Fashion Week for US and UK television.[26][27][28][29]

Personal life

In 2009, Balfour married Italian Count Riccardo Lanza at Arundel Castle, West Sussex. They divorced in 2011.[27]


  1. "Kinvara Balfour". Doollee - The Playwrights Database. Retrieved 29 November 2015.
  2. Conti, Samantha (1 December 2007). "London's New Poor". W Magazine. Retrieved 29 November 2015.
  3. "Kinvara Balfour". Specialist Speakers. Retrieved 29 November 2015.
  4. "Kinvara Balfour". United Agents. Retrieved 29 November 2015.
  5. "Kinvara Balfour". Get The Gloss. Retrieved 29 November 2015.
  6. "Comcast Buys DailyCandy, New York". Business Insider. 5 August 2008. Retrieved 20 January 2014.
  7. "Fashion, beauty, restaurants & more; StyleCard saves you money". StyleCard. 2015. Retrieved 29 November 2015.
  8. "Kinvara Balfour". London Speaker Bureau. Retrieved 29 November 2015.
  9. "Fashion in Conversation, Events at the Apple Store". iTunes. Retrieved 20 January 2014.
  10. Won, Nancy. "Up close and personal with Anna Wintour (kinda): The 5 best nuggets from her talk at the Apple store in Soho". FASHION Magazine. Retrieved 29 November 2015.
  11. Katrantzou, Mary. "The wonderful Kinvara Balfour channels her inner Carrie Bradshaw wearing Mary Katrantzou Resort 2014 for her 'Fashion In Conversation' series with the legendary Manolo Blahnik at the Apple Store in New York yesterday". Mary's World. Retrieved 29 November 2015.
  12. 1 2 Balfour, Kinvara (3 December 2013). "In conversation with costume designer Sandy Powell". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 29 November 2015.
  13. Carvell, Nick (8 April 2014). "Twelve things we learnt from Tom Ford's talk at the Apple Store". GQ. Retrieved 29 November 2015.
  14. Kilcooley-O'Halloran, Scarlett (8 April 2014). "Tom Ford Ties The Knot". Vogue UK. Retrieved 29 November 2015.
  15. Marfil, Lorelei. "Tom Ford Talks Marriage, Movies and More in London". Women's Wear Daily. Retrieved 29 November 2015.
  16. Sieczkowski, Cavan (8 April 2014). "Tom Ford Marries Longtime Partner Richard Buckley". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 29 November 2015.
  17. "Tom Ford Marries Richard Buckley". Vogue. Retrieved 29 November 2015.
  18. "Kinvara Balfour Fashion Talks". Tatler. 18 September 2013. Retrieved 29 November 2015.
  19. Elegant Ethics: Fashion in Conversation Archived 8 March 2014 at the Wayback Machine.
  20. Budzyna, Michelle (12 September 2014). "BUILD Presents New York Fashion Week Series". Retrieved 29 November 2015.
  21. "AOL Build". AOL On. Retrieved 29 November 2015.
  22. Mulshine, Molly (3 September 2014). "Pre-NYFW, Zac Posen Dishes on Cooking, Couture and Lena's Emmy Dress". The Observer. Retrieved 29 November 2015.
  23. "AOL Build". AOL On. Retrieved 29 November 2015.
  24. "FRAME Denim - The Swedish Powerhouse". AOL On. Retrieved 29 November 2015.
  25. "The New Fashion Superstars". Victoria and Albert Museum. 13 June 2014. Retrieved 29 November 2015.
  26. "Lady Kinvara Balfour: Telling Tales with Clothes". Guise Magazine. Retrieved 29 November 2015.
  27. 1 2 Tyzack, Anna (1 February 2014). "Lessons from the Stylish: Kinvara Balfour, creative director". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 29 November 2015.
  28. "Kinvara Balfour". European Speakers. Retrieved 29 November 2015.
  29. "Mary Katrantzou in Conversation with Kinvara Balfour". iTunes. Retrieved 29 November 2015.
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