Here we are still in the grip of an economic low, with high unemployment still rattling the world and the sales signs screaming at me every time I go to the mall. Yet, the wardrobe of style icon Audrey Hepburn, is as immune from recessionary woes as a blue chip stock. Pieces of Audrey Hepburn’s wardrobe just sold at auction at in London on Sunday for record-breaking amounts. I learned this from one of my favorite guilty pleasures, The Independent Fashion news section. The auction took place at Kerry Taylor London, an auction house that is a treasure trove of vintage and modern style pieces. You can find everything from a vintage Chanel gown to pieces of Queen Alexandra’s “lingerie” (underwear) at Kerry Taylor. Browse the online catalog sometime for glimpses of rare fashion eye candy. Its no surprise that this auction house became the home of Audrey Hepburn’s prized style possessions. Oh, what wouldn’t I have given to have played dress up in Audrey’s closet? Now, through the magic of the Internet we can. Here’s a little fantasy guided tour. If I had unlimited budget, and couture designers at my fingertips, The Recessionista would also indulge as Audrey did in the finest pieces.
The final selling price for Audrey’s finery was a grand £268,320 (€296,617 or approximately $435,995), twice what her auctioneers had estimated. What is it about Audrey style that intrigues us so? And why is her clothing so timeless? I believe its due to a few things. Her simplicity of style. The lines of her dresses are simple. No drop waists, ruffles or trendy touches. She paid top dollar for her wardrobe, but she kept it in top condition. It was typical of her to order extra fabric from her designers like Givenchy, so she could make repairs or alterations as needed later. Her casual wardrobe was equally chic and simple. A black turtleneck, Capri pants and ballet flats served her well. Remember how Gap bought that look back in their advertising campaign? As the holidays are here, its a fitting question to ask, how can we emulate Audrey style today? A few suggestions for my frugal fashionistas.
Invest in a good, but economical Little Black Dress. Macy’s has a whole section of their website devoted to the important fashion concept of the LBD brought to us by Coco Chanel.