For this week’s look back in celebration of the 15th Anniversary Year of FocusOnStyle online, I want to rewind a bit further to this very special post about how I met my style icon, Audrey Hepburn. What a lovely moment and privilege… S.H.
My evening with humanitarian and style icon Audrey Hepburn…
Having someone to inspire your work is so important to manifest your own personal abundance. Finally, I found my misplaced 35 mm slide of Ms Hepburn and myself and had to share it with you. I don’t know about you but I think almost every woman (and man) of a certain age has been mesmerized by the allure of Audrey Hepburn.
Honestly, as a sometimes chubby kid in Brooklyn I was able to fantasize about the what seemed like far off glam and easy elegance that Ms.Hepburn oozed on film. Every outfit she wore, (oh, those black Capri pants), Givenchy or otherwise, on screen or off, left me wanting to one day grow up and have a smidgen of her grace and charm.
As a fashion stylist, her personal style– particularly off-screen in her later years– became an unconscious reference point to how I define timeless elegance.
Breakfast at Tiffany’s left an indelible mark on how I envision timeless style. I was first enchanted by Rome partly because of Roman Holiday, and can’t see a lighted match without thinking of Charade... oh right, and Cary Grant.
Face forward a number of years to 1991 and flashback even more now, I had an opportunity to spend an evening with my style icon Audrey Hepburn. And, WOW.
Rarely, does celebrity impress me unless it truly represents an accomplishment rather than a role.
But this was different. Just look at my massive dopey grin in the photo above.
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I was heavily involved as the co-chair for a New York Metropolitan Junior Committee 50 Stars for UNICEF event earlier in the year. Ms.Hepburn was the UNICEF International Goodwill Ambassador, which she considered her greatest role. As a token of appreciation for my work for the event, I was asked to be Audrey Hepburn’s UNICEF “escort” for a gala later in the year.
I gotta tell you that it was a true “I could die” moment.
It really meant nothing more than to shadow Ms.Hepburn throughout the evening in case she needed something (the gorgeous Isabella Rossellini was my other charge & we had a deal for me to tell her if she needed lipstick).
I dug out a classic black velvet vintage couture dress from my closet, a Carolyne Roehm velvet and rhinestone belt, and a pair of CZ diamond earrings that I picked up at either a Carolyne Roehm (it was 1991) or Oscar de la Renta sample sale and was good to go.
At the gala, which raced by very quickly, what I noticed about Ms Hepburn other than how beautifully regal she was– and yes, thin but not skinny– was that we were wearing almost identical diamond flower earrings!
Ok, mine were Swarovski crystal and set in gold and hers were diamond and set in platinum but they were pretty darn close. Close enough, that to this day I do a little happy dance and kvell at the thought.
But, what was more memorable was the grace and poise in which Ms. Hepburn said thank you over and over again each time someone approached her and said, “I’m such a fan of yours.”
Audrey Hepburn’s genuineness in her gratitude to each nervously uttered compliment that she received that evening made her even more exceptional. What a beautiful human being; I feel very privileged to have met her.
Photo: Graciously snapped by Patrick McMullan, 1991. Patrick, I will always thank you!
In honor of my style icon Audrey Hepburn, I pulled some timeless and elegant flower earrings for you to consider:
Original publish date: Aug 22, 2013
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