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Week 17: Rita Hayworth is a Babe. Her Life and Seductive Style.

Rita Hayworth is one of Old Hollywood's most seductive actresses. Her iconic performance of “Put the Blame on Mame" in Gilda (1946) and improvised quick single-glove striptease is 10 times more erotic than any 50 Shades of Grey scene. Rita wears a long, strapless, black satin gown, with a side-slit and big flirty bow at the hip. And of course, the gown is paired with classic long black gloves. The Independent lists this scene in their Ten Best Fashion Moments in Film.

Margarita Cansino  before and  Rita Hayworth  after. What a transformation!

Margarita Cansino before and Rita Hayworth after. What a transformation!

Rita started her life as Margarita Carmen Cansino. Her family had a strong background in professional dance, and so her Spanish father pushed young Margarita to dance and she was featured in several films as a dancer. Her first roles were small ones as pretty exotic dancers with no lines. After playing the same kinds of roles as Argentinian, Egyptian and Russian dancers, Margarita decided to change her fate and took on her mother's Irish-English maiden name Hayworth in order to appeal to Americans. That was followed with shortening her name to Rita, changing her Mediterranean hairline with a painful electrolysis procedure, and dying her black hair to, the now iconic, ginger red colour. After that, Rita's career was on the rise.

Film posters with Rita Hayworth.

Rita acted opposite such stars as Gene Kelly, Fred Astaire and Cary Grant. For three years, beginning in 1944, Rita was named one of the top movie box-office attractions in the world. Hayworth was adept in ballet, tap dance, ballroom, and Spanish routines.

Unfortunately, despite her successful acting career, her love life was a mess. She married and divorced 5 times. Rita's most famous marriages were to Orson Welles and to Prince Aly Khan, which actually made Rita, and not Grace Kelly, the first movie star to become a princess. 

Rita once revealed with some bitterness that “Men go to bed with Gilda, but wake up with me.”

 

She might have been a femme fatale on the screen, but in real life Rita was a shy and gentle person and suffered from an inferiority complex. However, her image as a sultry fiery beauty inspired creation of hundreds of characters, including Jessica Rabbit in Who Framed Roger Rabbit and beauty looks and styles of millions of women across the globe.

Want to steal Rita's Seductive Style?

I picked three timeless trends and selected the best items online for you. Put that glam on and "Gilda" yourself up!

1. SLIP Dress Trend 

Rita Hayworth in lingerie style dresses. Old Hollywood Inspiration.

2. long FITTED gown

Rita Hayworth long seductive gown. Sexy style

3. Bedazzling sequins

rita hayworth sequins

Week 13: Grace Kelly. Best Looks of Princess Grace.

Best fashion looks of Grace Kelly.

Grace Kelly is a timeless style icon. Her wedding dress has been continually named one of the best bridal outfits of all time. Grace's film and casual looks are still getting copied all around the world. Even before she became Princess of Monaco, Grace always looked a perfect picture in her simple, elegant dresses, candy-coloured suits, and sophisticated, yet never showy, evening gowns. Let's have a look at the best outfits of the most beautiful Hollywood actress who ever lived.

1. Pastel Colours.

Grace Kelly loved to wear pastel coloured outfits. Pastels are great for summer and create a classy high-society air around the person wearing them.

Grace Kelly pastel outfits. Gorgeous style of Princess of Monaco.

 

2. The Perfect Silhouette. 

Best looks of Grace Kelly

Big full skirts will make your waist look tiny with curvy hips, and will make everyone swoon over your gorgeous figure. Avoid high heels, and try to wear your "Grace Kelly" style dresses with pretty flats or kitten heeled shoes

3. Elegant Black.

Black never looked boring on Grace because it contrasted beautifully with her blonde hair. Moreover, she always added something special like white gloves, a beautiful brooch, or a string of pearls to make her black outfits even more elegant.

Grace Kelly in elegant black.

4. Bows

Grace Kelly adored bow details and pussycat bow blouses, especially after she became a mother. This feminine type of blouse is an essential wardrobe piece for every feminine lady and can be worn with high waist pencil skirts or with an elegant pair of trousers.

Grace Kelly fashion trends: Pussycat Bow.

5. Green

Grace Kelly was proud of her Irish heritage and considered green a very lucky colour. She especially loved sea-green.

Grace Kelly wearing her favorite color - sea-green.

Let me know what other Themed Week you would like to see!

Week 10: Timeless Essentials. The Life & Style of Jacqueline de Ribes

Jacqueline de Ribes costume exhibition in New York. 

When I got invited by my friend Julia to see the exhibition dedicated to the personal style of Jacqueline de Ribes at the MET museum, I did not know much about de Ribes. But after marvelling at every single exhibited dress and reading fascinating stories about the beautiful Countess Jacqueline, I was eager to learn more and share with you.

About Jacqueline de Ribes

The Countess Jacqueline de Ribes was born with her title in 1929 and married at the age of 18 to Vicomte Edouard de Ribes, a very rich banker who later became Comte de Ribes. The Countess was everything and more of what you might imagine a French aristocrat to be. She was raised in a lavish chateau with a myriad of servants and the best Parisian dressmakers willing to satisfy her every fashion whim.

By the 50's, the Countess de Ribes earned the title of  "Reigning Queen of Paris" and became the centre of attention at every gala and masquerade ball she attended (and she attended hundreds of them!). Early on, the Countess mastered the art of the grand entrance. She would plan every detail of her appearance thoroughly and was almost always ridiculously late even to the most important events.

LE BAL ORIENTAL

Tiepolo's fresco version for the ballroom in the Palazzo Labia, Venice. 

Tiepolo's fresco version for the ballroom in the Palazzo Labia, Venice. 

In 1951, de Ribes made quite an impression at the Venetian Ball du Siecle at the Palazzo Labia. Just so you can understand the extent of how difficult it was to stand out at that 1951 ball, I will give you a little glimpse into that night.

 

Le Bal Oriental was hosted by Charles de Beistegui. Invitations were sent out 6 months(!) prior to the event to give guests enough time to design their elaborate, over-the-top costumes. The ball's theme  The Banquet of Cleopatra was inspired by Giovanni Battista Tiepolo's famous fresco in the Palazzo Labia that Beistegui, by the way, owned. The guest list included everyone who was anyone. Christian Dior attended the party in a costume designed by Salvador Dalí, and Dalí showed up in a creation by Dior. The majority of guests were dressed in lavish, opulent costumes made from exquisite fabrics and adorned with ridiculously expensive fine jewellery. The ball was the ultimate, exquisite masquerade, that could have rivalled one of Marie Antoinette's own parties.

Daisy Fellowes, with James Caffery as her page, poses in her Christian Dior Queen of Africa costume.

Daisy Fellowes, with James Caffery as her page, poses in her Christian Dior Queen of Africa costume.

Guests rehearsed their arrivals for days in advance of the ball.

Guests rehearsed their arrivals for days in advance of the ball.

In the middle of that visual feast appeared the young Countess De Ribes, un-fashionably late of course, but dressed in a white dress as seen on an 18th century painting by Pietro Longhi, accompanied by two identically attired women to complete her costume. Since then, her entrances were impatiently awaited.

Last Queen of Paris, Jacqueline, comtesse de Ribes, multiplied herself by commissioning matching costumes for two attendants.

Last Queen of Paris, Jacqueline, comtesse de Ribes, multiplied herself by commissioning matching costumes for two attendants.

The Ball Oriental. De Ribes costume

Jacqueline de Ribes would combine the unimaginable: creating looks so memorable people would discuss them for years, re-designed couture pieces and wore extravagant headpieces, doing so with immeasurable grace and confidence. Her father-in-law once described Jacqueline as a cross between a Russian princess and a showgirl from Folies Bergere.

de-ribes-style-icon-tribute
Jacqueline
“She would arrive at a fitting in a cabriolet,” recalls Valentino. “A mixture of great Parisian chic and the allure of a diva.”
Jacqueline de Ribes
The Countess photographed by Avedon

The Countess photographed by Avedon

The Countess was photographed by the most famous photographers of the time, including Richard Avedon who called her his muse. She was a patron of many designers including Dior, Valentino and Yves Saint Laurent.

With her love of couture fashion, it was only a matter of time before the Countess launched her own fashion line. On her 53rd birthday she informed everyone that she was starting her pret-a-porter clothing line. Her husband, children and friend, Yves Saint Laurent, supported her and the line was a success. Unfortunately, due to health problems,  Jacqueline had to dissolve her fashion house in 1995.

At the age of 86, Jacqueline still turns heads and looks as elegant as ever. The MET exhibition dedicated to her style was a great success and I am happy to share a few photographs from the exhibition with you all. In the future, I would love to re-create some of the Countess de Ribes' iconic looks, but for now enjoy the fashion feast!

White dresses of the Countess de Ribes
Fashion de Ribes at MET
De Ribes fashion sense, parisian chic
Dress of Jacqueline 
orange-gown-de-ribs-gorgeous
“She was a real femme du monde. She had an art de vivre,” says Pierre Bergé. “I think she may be the last to know how to live like that.”
The Countess Jacqueline now