Our Four Favourite Hollywood Style Icons

Kettlemag, Style, Hollywood, Rebecca Parker
Written by Rebecca Parker

America month wouldn’t be complete without taking a look at some of the most beautiful and influential Hollywood starlets. From the 1940’s-1960’s a whole host of glamorous women made their name on the silver screen, each influencing the style of a generation of young females, something that is still noted today. 

Grace Kelly

[Image source: Flickr]

Grace Kelly was a Hollywood pioneer. Making her debut aged 20, her short but sweet film career saw her take the female lead in five films, including The Country Girl, High Noon, Dial M for Murder, Rear Window and High Society, in which she starred alongside the famous crooners Frank Sinatra and Bing Crosby.

Despite being a celebrated star, Grace’s style was best known for its simplicity. Her carefree way of dressing ensured that she was able to remain subtly classic. Wearing a range of Capri pants, dresses with nipped in waists and sunglasses, her style was sophisticated and elegant. Grace worked with directors and designers on her film costumes. Costume designer, Edith Head, was quoted saying: “I have never worked with anybody who had a more intelligent grasp of what we were doing.” 

Marilyn Monroe 

[Image source: Flickr]

We can’t talk about Hollywood stars without mentioning Marilyn. The blonde beauty was a powerful sex symbol and still remains a cultural pop figure today. Her film roles including Bus Stop, which she was praised by critics for and secured a Golden Globe nomination and Some Like it Hot, where she finally picked up the prestigious accolade, secured her place as a true icon.

Marilyn’s style is something that is still imitated today. Her curls and curvy figure were an enviable trait and she knew how to dress for her hourglass figure, whether it was that famous white dress or a casual sweater/capri pant look. She developed her signature style and taught us what real women wear. She also knew the power of a pair of high heels: “I don’t know who invented high heels, but all women owe him a lot.” Amen to that. 

Audrey Hepburn

[Image source: Flickr]

Audrey Hepburn is renown for her role as Holly in Breakfast at Tiffany’s and her style was not too dissimilar. Pulled together and classy, Audrey made sure she never went out without looking polished, whether this was in a skirt and heels or a statement coat and sunglasses.  Audrey said: “I believe in manicures. I believe in overdressing. I believe in primping at leisure and wearing lipstick. I believe in pink.”

Her collaboration with Givenchy for the costume she wore in the film Sabrina paved the way for future collaborations and the introduction of Parisian style to America. In particular she championed the little black dress. The simplicity of the LBD, whether it be for work or paired with statement jewelry is the ultimate in understated chic.

Photographer Richard Avedon made her his muse, photographing her on the streets of Paris as well as shooting for the cover of Harper’s Baazar numerous times throughout the 1950’s. Despite having worked with some of the biggest models, such as Suzy Parker and Dorian Leigh, he preferred to spend the time with Audrey and she too enjoyed sitting for him.  

Elizabeth Taylor

[Image source: Flickr] 

Elizabeth Taylor first gained exposure in the film National Velvet before starring in Father of the Bride, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof and the title role in Cleopatra. Elizabeth’s biggest passion was for jewelry claiming, “big girls need big diamonds.” After her death her collection was reportedly worth $150 million.

The book My Love Affair with Jewelry documents her collection, including gifts bought by her husband Richard Burton and the largest pair of perfectly symmetrical pear-shaped pearls in the world. As well as her love of jewelry, Elizabeth was a fashion icon throughout her career. She knew how to accentuate her face, chest and waist and helped to popularize designer Valentino. She was a pioneer of feminine tailoring and paired with her precisely applied eyeliner she influenced the cat’s eye look that is still as iconic today as it was then. 

Who is your favourite Hollywood starlet? Let us know in the comments below. 

Kettle mag, America season