Ever since I was a little girl and watched my all time favorite movie Breakfast at Tiffany’s, I have loved Audrey Hepburn. Today she would have been 85, so I thought I would dedicate my post to her since she is still such a huge icon and represents beauty in every aspect.
The Audrey Hepburn Look was first inspired when she graced the cover of Time Magazine in 1953. The elegant Audrey Hepburn look is still a mark of classy and classic femininity to this day.
Hubert de Givenchy is responsible for creating the Audrey Hepburn style - particularly the little black dress - that would inspire women’s fashions for decades.
When told that he’d design a dress for “Ms. Hepburn” for the movie Sabrina in 1954, Givenchy mistakenly believed it would be for Katherine Hepburn, and expressed some disappointment when he found out that it wasn’t. But in classic Audrey Hepburn style she won him over, forging a friendship and collaboration on fashion that would last for the rest of her life.
The most recognizable style was the iconic Givenchy black dress Audrey Hepburn wore in Breakfast at Tiffany’s (1961), a film inspired by a Truman Capote novella.
Hepburn won an Academy Award in 1953 for the movie and stole the hearts of audiences and critics worldwide.
Not many people know this but Audrey Hepburn didn’t have an easy childhood. She endured many hardships during WWII. During the German occupation of the Netherlands, she suffered from malnutrition, anemia and respiratory issues. Her family barely had enough food to survive.
Many years later Audrey reflected on her youth to recognize that many others had it much worse than she did by saying “I have memories. More than once I was at the station seeing trainloads of Jews being transported, seeing all these faces over the top of the wagon. I remember, very sharply, one little boy standing with his parents on the platform, very pale, very blond, wearing a coat that was much too big for him, as he stepped on to the train. I was a child observing a child.”
She had a knack for languages (she was fluent in English, Dutch, French, Spanish and Italian) and a natural aptitude for dance. When her family moved to Amsterdam, she took ballet lessons with Sonia Gaskell, one of the greatest Dutch ballerinas. Although very talented, at 5’7” Audrey was considered too tall to become a first-rate ballerina at the time.
Audrey’s childhood helped increase her empathy. When she left her successful movie career to focus on her family and humanitarian issues, Audrey became a Goodwill Ambassador of UNICEF.
Even four months before her death she was quoted as saying “Taking care of children has nothing to do with politics. I think perhaps with time, instead of there being a politicization of humanitarian aid, there will be a humanization of politics.”
Audrey Hepburn still has a universal appeal. There was something about her beauty that was childlike and unthreatening to women.
She had a unique and astonishing form of beauty, intelligence, kindness, modesty and class.
Ultimately, it’s not the roles she played that made her an enduring cultural icon, but who she was as a person…and this is why I love Audrey Hepburn.