Audrey Hepburn is arguably one of the most famous and iconic women of the past century. She still gets listed in polls as one of the most beautiful women of all time, beating out famous contemporaries like Grace Kelly and Marilyn Monroe. Interestingly, she did not consider herself a beauty, disliking her crooked teeth, wide nostrils and large feet. Of course, we take a look at one of her photos and say, "Come on, you gorgeous Audrey, what were you complaining about?"
This presents something intriguing to consider. The way we perceive ourselves can often be so different from what others see. We examine every flaw and enlarge it in our minds, thinking that everyone else ponders it as much as we do ourselves. Not only is this completely untrue, but a very unhealthy mindset. And it will be something women struggle with until the end of time.
The only way to change this perception is to focus on the positive, speaking the truth and affirming the fact that each and every one of us is unique and beautiful, created by a loving God. And really, the outside is just the shell of the real you and me, and the most perfect physical beauty can not cover up an ugly heart. On the flip side, inner loveliness is unable to be contained and makes the person who possesses it more beautiful than any of the "perfect" celebrities and models that are attacking us from magazines and runways. Don't forget it.
Now to get back on topic (lol)... Audrey Hepburn seems to have been a woman who had that special inner beauty, also possessing a deep well of compassion for others, the gift of making anyone at his ease, and the carriage and behavior of a finely bred lady. And, of course, she knew how to have fun. (Her informal, behind-the-scenes photos are some of the most amusing and endearing glimpses of her personality.)
Audrey Hepburn is also known for her attainability. While other 1950s glamour girls were parading around in evening gowns and jewels that would never fit in a normal women's budget, Audrey made big sunglasses, classic pearls, and the astonishingly simple LBD (Little Black Dress), pieces that every woman could wear, look good in, and afford. (Although she also wore her own fair share of couture, establishing a lifelong frienship with Hubert de Givenchy, who dressed her for some of her most memorable films.) She never even had her ears pierced.
In my opinion, Audrey was never so lovely as in the film Sabrina. (Although her first Hollywood film, Roman Holiday, remains my favorite of her work.) The pixie hair cut suited her lovely angular face like no other, in my opinion, and I love her best when attired in the simple black top, cropped pants and ballet flats she wears late in the film (also the button-up top and shorts from the boating scene). That sort of casual glamour is the very best kind.
Of course, that amazing black and white Givency creation worn at David's party has become an icon itself. I have seen numerous recreations of the simple cocktail dress with elaborate overskirt and stunning embroidery, but it's pretty hard to live up to that original.
Now here's one of my favorite clips from the film, in which Audrey sings the popular French tune, La Vie En Rose. You pretty much can't beat her rendition. Oh yes, and Linus' brilliant advice regarding impulses. ;)
I've got a huge publicity still from Sabrina hanging in my sewing room (wearing the aforementioned black with flats ensemble) and seeing her there when I'm working always inspires me. How amazing it would be if I could be half the well-behaved lady with the heart of love and service that she was.
If you want to read more about Audrey and really get inside the heart of this beautiful woman, I highly recommend Audrey Style, by Pamela Clark Keogh. It paints a intimate, honest portrait of a very special person.
I hope you're having a lovely week! God bless you all. :)
Images: Doctor Macro