Those closest to me (and anyone who has read my about page) know that I am Audrey Hepburn’s biggest fan! So when I heard earlier this year, that a number of pieces from her personal collection were coming to London to be auctioned at the world famous Christies, I knew that I had to visit. The collection has been open for public view before the auction begins today.
Audrey’s son’s Sean Ferrer and Luca Dotti have curated this fascinating collection of photos, clothes, letters, accessories and film scripts, that span her entire career. From Roman Holiday, Breakfast at Tiffany’s and My Fair Lady to her years in the fashion scene and throughout her incredible humanitarian work- the life and times of Audrey Hepburn are a beautiful insight into a woman that still influences so many.
One of my favourite parts of this exhibition were the scripts from her films such as Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Wait Until Dark and Two For the Road. In them you can see how Audrey had scribbled out words and added in her own, often in blue ink.
Another incredible part throughout this collection were the numerous letters from her nearest and dearest friends. Including the directors that she worked with and her co-stars. Like Steven Spielberg, who sent Audrey an engraved Tiffany bangle with her name on it and a letter thanking her for being a part of his film. One of the most surprising letters was one from Cher. In all honesty I would never associate Cher with Audrey. Yet in her letter, she explains just how much Audrey had inspired her to become an actress. All of these amazing letters just show how admired Audrey was to those she worked with.
Elegance is the only beauty that never fades.
Many of the clothes on display were Givenchy Couture as expected. Audrey and Givenchy not only had a partnership in fashion but also a life-long friendship that lasted right up until the end of Audrey’s life. It was incredible to see the clothes that Givenchy created for the woman he was so inspired by. It wasn’t just clothes either, L’Interdit was Audrey’s signature perfume made specifically by Givenchy with her in mind.
The clothes Givenchy created for Audrey alone could and should one day be an exhibition all on their own. They are after all pieces of fashion and film history, as well as era defining trends. Her coats and dresses exude that elegance she was so well known for, but also cement the fact that she was and still is a leading figure in the fashion world. Many of the pieces on display from the 60s and 70s weren’t too far away from the styles of today. In fact they could have just stepped off the Paris Fashion Week catwalk! It was brilliant to see big sleeves that have made a comeback over the last year, and her instantly recognisable trench coats that are undoubtedly timeless.
Clothes and personal accessories such as hair pieces and a sleeping mask, just like Holly Golightly’s in Breakfast at Tiffany’s, made up a fascinating insight into her style both on screen and behind the camera. There was even a gorgeously bright and colourful painting that Audrey had painted herself.
It was incredible to see the collection of someone I have admired for so long. Audrey Hepburn was a star and a fashion icon but beyond that she represented kindness, humility and grace. I never knew a world with Audrey, I was born a year after her death, but to me she is the kind of person that I aspire to be like. Even after a bad day, I can watch one of her incredible films for the umpteenth time and really forget about everything but also know that it is important to continue being kind even if the world isn’t.
The Christies Auction begins at 2pm, Kings Street London. I will definitely be tuning in!