"..a bardy view!"

The iconic and Incomparable Audrey Hepburn – a personal tribute….

Feminine beauty can be defined both within and without. Yet there are few women who exude both. Marilyn Monroe – stunning, flawed and vulnerable. Rita Hayworth, stunning, confident and – vulnerable. Sophia Loren, stunning, strong etc.  Audrey

What identifies these stars is the era they came from. A period spanning 20 years between 1945 and 1965.

There are others of course – Eva Gardner, Lana Turner, Jane Russell, and so on. Each one with a particular asset (or two).

Non of them could be regarded as great actors in comparison with their more thespian contemporaries, but they symbolised womanhood as far as the silver screen followers were concerned.

It was the age were women were women, girdled and strapped to enhance form and desire.

The 1960's marked a change in the presentation of women, the burning of the bra, and the freedom to wear clothes less restricted but allowing flow and natural grace – Raquel Welch being the exception.

A new breed of stars graced the screen – and with them heralded the girl next door persona – the girl who could be attainable.

Somewhere in the middle of all this one stood out above all. Audrey Hepburn personified womanhood in a different light. Waif-like, elegant, stylish and free from the trappings of the hour-glass figure which most young women then, and even more today, aspire to. Audrey2

But before I am accused of being a male chauvinist, drooling over times past – (after all I make these social observations having been innocent of all the charms at the time – mainly because I wasn't alive in the first half of the period and secondly because I was a child in the second half, a child in the sixties, not of them – there's a difference) it is because that during my years of development I recognised beauty both outside and in.

The prepubescent youth who slobbered together with his equally hormonally challenged friends over Raquel Welch in One Million Years BC, also watched enthralled at Audrey in movies like My Fair Lady and Breakfast at Tiffany's.

But it was a different stirring of the loins.

It was the realisation that women are more than sculptured flesh, painted and dressed to excite, but on the contrary, there are women who exude sex appeal with dignity and grace, with charm, intelligence and modesty.

If all of that could be bottled, then Audrey Hepburn had gallons of the stuff.

Many try to emulate her, some have been compared to her, but non have come close. She was unique. She was a fashion designer's dream. Her iconography ensures her face adorns a myriad of places.

Advertisers perpetually seek an "Audrey".

But how many know of her? how many look beyond the veneer? She asked those very questions herself. She devoted much of her time as a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador and worked tirelessly for them. No doubt in part because of her experiences as a child in danger during WWII.

Always bemused and astounded by the attention she garnered, once when she was being photographed by a US magazine during a UNICEF mission, she was asked if they could airbrush out her wrinkles "Don't you dare airbrush a single wrinkle" she replied with horror "I've earned every single one!"

She died on the 20th January 1993 at just 63 years old. Eighteen years ago. But she has left a legacy and memory that few will ever forget.

Her son Sean Hepburn Ferrer devoted a book to her entitled "An Elegant Spirit". Three simple words which perfectly sum up a life. Many seek such a spirit, some may lose one, some may hold on to one.

Perhaps we are all looking for one – an elegant spirit. I found one!

So if you find yours, don't lose it, and never let it go.

"For beautiful eyes, look for the good in others; for beautiful lips, speak only words of kindness; and for poise, walk with the knowledge that you are never alone." – Audrey Hepburn




February 16, 2011 - Posted by | Arts, Books, Education, Film, General, History, Photography


  1. Never before seen, behind the scenes footage
    of Audrey Hepburn in the movie”My Fair Lady”
    The footage was filmed by a extra using an
    Pirated 8MM home movie camera;
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    Comment by Eric Saucier | March 9, 2013 | Reply

  2. Good luck with it Eric. Let me know how you get on! Sounds like precious stuff.


    Comment by Bar De Ness | March 13, 2013 | Reply

  3. Charming post. I’ll always remember her in My Fair Lady. ‘All I want is a room somewhere, far away from the cold night air. Warm hands, warm feet, warm face. Oh, wouldn’t it, be lovely’.


    Comment by spookmoor | March 13, 2013 | Reply

  4. Cheers Spook. Always nice to see an old post rise from it’s dormant state. Cor blimey! Lavverly – Gawd bless ya!

    Liked by 1 person

    Comment by Bar De Ness | March 13, 2013 | Reply

  5. One of the lovliest tributes to Audrey Hepburn that I’ve read; in fact the undertones suggest it is a tribute not only to Ms. Hepburn, but to women of her ilk, in general. Thank you for creating Bardiness, and sharing your link about Audrey Hepburn.

    Liked by 1 person

    Comment by charlino | September 26, 2013 | Reply

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