Award-winning actress, humanitarian, fashion model and style icon, Audrey Hepburn has become a name synonymous with intelligence, elegance and femininity. What woman can forget that little black dress, those large sunglasses and those black gloves in Breakfast At Tiffany's? Since captivating movie audiences in 1953 as Princess Ann in Roman Holiday, Hepburn, who died in 1993 at 63, defined a look that was new to Hollywood. Unlike other actresses of her time who wanted to accentuate their curves (think Marilyn Monroe), Hepburn kept it simple. She loved clean lines, nipped-in waists, turtlenecks, capri pants and ballet pumps, clothes that emphasised her elfin looks, pixie crop and tall, slim physique.
Shoe designer Manolo Blahnik described it brilliantly when he said: "The imprint of Miss Hepburn is absolutely, totally present. Like it or not, she will be the most important look of the 20th century." Standing the test of time, Hepburn's wardrobe staples are still eminently wearable. Jemma Nicholls takes a look at her enduring style, life and loves. So black and so stylish, this shift dress that Hepburn wore in the 1961 film Breakfast At Tiffany's was created by the designer Hubert de Givenchy. Describing his muse and close friend, Givenchy said: "Audrey had a big personality. In the choice of her dresses, in wearing them with such elegance, chic and simplicity. In a very personal way, she created her own look - the Hepburn Style." This iconic dress was sold for £467,200 (Dh2.72 million) at Christie's in London in 2006.
"You can always tell what kind of a person a man really thinks you are by the earrings he gives you," Hepburn observed. What more is there to say? Liali Jewellery Hepburn's favourite perfume, L'Interdit by Givenchy, was created specially for her, inspired by a woman who was classical, feminine and elegant. A soft, floral perfume with drops of jasmine and rose with notes of amber and incense, it suggests a profile that is alluring and captivating, stimulating and treasured, warm and charming. Oh so very Audrey.
Teaming them with her other love, ballet flats, Hepburn made capri pants famous in movies such as Sabrina and Funny Face. Even today this versatile look remains a wardrobe staple. Miu Miu at www.net-a-porter.com Hepburn loved feminine clothes, taking the simplest silhouettes and making them special. But she also knew how to pull off a male-inspired look impeccably. After Roman Holiday, women everywhere were copying her short haircut, neckties, full skirts, cinched waists and masculine-inspired button-down shirts. The Gap
"Rome. By all means. Rome. I will cherish my visit here in memory as long as I live," Hepburn declared in her Oscar-winning role as Princess Ann in Roman Holiday.
AUDREY ON AUDREY
HER PHILOSOPHY... Success is like reaching an important birthday and finding you're exactly the same.
THE LOOK... My look is attainable. Women can look like me by flipping out their hair, buying the large sunglasses and the little sleeveless dresses.
DOWNSIDE TO FAME... There are certain shades of limelight that can wreck a girl's complexion.
HER AIM... I don't want to be alone, I want to be left alone.
HER CHARACTER... I was born with an enormous need for affection, and a terrible need to give it.
STOCKISTS Trousers, Miu Miu at www.net-a-porter.com. Bag; sunglasses, Louis Vuitton. Shirt, Gap. Earrings, Liali Jewellery.