I believe that true style comes naturally but it doesn’t come naturally to everyone. Hollywood starlets and wanna-be pop princesses can strut around in designer labels and sit in the front row at Paris fashion week, but that still doesn’t mean they have great style….it means that have great stylists.
I’m talking about those people who are icons, who evolved into fashion legends. I’m talking about the classics! In this article, I’d like to highlight and pay tribute to some women who exemplify a style that should be admired and never overlooked.
Grace Kelly: A woman who embodied her own name, Grace Kelly portrayed a classic elegance that was neither imposing nor timid. Though she was ultimately to become a princess to another nation, she was and still is considered American royalty by fashion lovers everywhere. She dressed according to her hourglass figure, adhering to fitted waistlines and full skirts. Her most notable fashion moment was perhaps the day of her marriage to Prince Rainier of Monaco. Many are familiar with pictures of Grace, looking resplendent in a high collared lace gown complete with a full skirt and flowing train. The soon-to-be princess looked so angelic that her dress is still used as inspiration to brides today, most recently seen in the lovely confection worn by Kate Middleton (now Duchess of Cambridge). To me, the most trademark feature of Grace Kelley’s style was the general aura of her style; trim, tidy, polished with not a hair out of place. The sophistication of a matching purse and shoe accompanied by a subtle sheen from a strand of pearls is what makes Grace Kelly the iconic woman of fashion. Few can match the class she brought to the silver screen and fewer still can capture her classic sense of style.
Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis: Another great American beauty and style icon, Jackie was always the belle of any ball she attended. As wife to the 35th president of the United States, Jackie was the symbol of classic American style to all that had the privilege to see on the arm of John F. Kennedy. One of the privileges of being the president’s wife was that Jackie was allowed to keep famous fashion designers like Oleg Cassini on retainer. During her years as the first lady, Jackie maintained a clean cut look with tailored skirts, dresses, and jackets (usually accompanied by her signature pill-box hat). In her later years, she relaxed her style and embraced a more bohemian look; longer hair, pants instead of skirts and of course, giant sunglasses. No matter what fashion vibe she was channeling, Jackie always looked put-together and unique.
Doris Day: A lovable actress whose musical films were number one hits in the 1950s and 1960s, Doris Day brought a sunny disposition and cheerful sense of style to the silver screen. Whether she was breaking up to make up with Rock Hudson, or trying to win back the affections of James Gardner, Doris’s characters were always cute, charming, and colorfully dressed (much like the actress in real life). Though not seriously sophisticated or consistently elegant, her luminous smile and vibrant wardrobe is worth mentioning as are her films. To catch some of the lively (and always color-coordinated) apparel, check out Please Don’t Eat the Daisies, A Touch of Mink, and Move Over, Darling.
Emma Watson: The most current icon to make my list, Emma Watson has a certain sparkle and whit that many starlets of today lack. Most notable (besides that fact that she starred in one of the most popular film series of the last decade) is that Emma brings a sense of whimsy and femininity to everything she wears. Being a petite actress, she can pull off a lot of styles that would not suitable for taller women; she seems to favor shapelier silhouettes that are well constructed and show off her legs. Her knack for fashion is so notable that she won Best British Style at the 2014 British Fashion Awards and has modeled for both Burberry and Lancôme. Her general presence is one of grace, sophistication, and daring; I’m excited to see her style continue to evolve in the years to come.
Other style icons not to be overlooked are….
Princess Kate, Duchess of Cambridge and Queen of Stylish Sophistication.
Diana Vreeland, late editor-in-chief of Vogue and life-long fashionista.
Emmy Rossum, beautiful singer and actress. Many recognize her as Christine from the film Phantom of the Opera; others recognize her unique sense of style.