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Style this week: the Audrey Hepburn look—wherever you’re going, I’m going your way

Filed by Anna Deans/January 20, 2014/4.26

The concept for this week’s style profile began while I was shoe shopping at local Wellington-based store, Shoezies. This shop is full of exquisitely made, usually hand-crafted, European brand shoes. I came across these forest green, sling-back, pointy-toe, kitten heels and fell in love. I am celebrating the comeback of kitten heels as they are über-chic in every sense. The sophisticated quality of these delicate heels reminded me somehow, of classic style icon Audrey Hepburn. Audrey, coincidentally, also wore a lot of kitten heels over the years.

   Audrey’s style is timeless elegance. Simplistic, chic tailoring mixed with the exact right amount of originality. Here, I have shown some of my favourite looks of hers. Audrey was one of the initiators of the little black dress, and she really knew how to nail it with a structural cinched waist, ’60s square neckline and straight-down skirt. Her pairings were always simple. She usually matched her dress to kitten heels or flats with a classic up-do and fine jewels, usually earrings. Audrey also nailed dressed-down chic with Capri pants, sweaters, ballet flats, short-shorts and man-style shirts. Her make-up look is also to die for, consisting of super-strong brows (which I am rocking at the moment, only less extremely!), flawless skin, dusty pink lips and slight cat eyes. Gorgeous!

   Here’s the look I came up with inspired by Audrey’s timeless style and starting with my to-die-for kitty heels.

   When researching Audrey’s looks, one of my favourites was most definitely her cute-as-a-button short-shorts and shirt look. I also happen to think kitten heels look extra-good with a pair of tailored shorts. Phillip Lim 3.1 was the obvious choice to me for shorts, as in my mind, Phillip is the king of modern tailoring. I found these textured, white and tailored shorts by him and was sold. I also love the forest green-and-white combo.
   I wanted to bring in an element of pattern or texture to the look. This super-stunning Isabel Marant top I came across the other day immediately sprung to mind: the colours tie in well as it includes white and green, but in minimal amounts resulting in nothing too matchy. I also like the late ’50s–early ’60s Chanel vibe it projects, which is very Audrey, but in a modern way. Ladies will be also glad to know the inward-pointing arrows in the print will also effortlessly flatter your figure, projecting a more hourglass-like frame.
   I couldn’t resist adding the classic flap-front Chanel bag in a low-key taupe tone. It screams ’60s while still being relevant today. I would kill to have one of those babies: they literally look good with anything and everything.
   Audrey was known to wear little pearl drop earrings so I decided to incorporate a modern and more edgy version. This pair by Taranaki-based designer Jennifer Laracy combines a classic top half of pearl and silver, with a more edgy and out-there black stone and chain bottom half. I love the edged-up but still classy vibe. I feel Audrey may consider these if she were to be dressing in 2014.
   Nails-wise, I decided to just do it and go for the classic ’50s- and ’60s-style bright red. The red also brings out the other colours in the look as a contrasting tone as well as a more sexy vixen element. I like to think Audrey had a more wild side we don’t know about.
   As I love a good pair of one-off vintage sunnies, I decided not to include a specific pair. Why not go to your favourite local vintage shop and pick up an Audrey-inspired pair of your own to go with the look? Be sure to consider you face shape when picking your pair.
   How do you feel about my more sophisticated-than-usual look?—Anna Deans

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