The above quote was from Audrey Hepburn in praise of her close friend and collaborator the Parisian courtier Hubert de Givenchy. Theirs was an inspired and brilliant partnership in eight films beginning with “Sabrina” in 1954 culminating in 1979 with “Bloodline”. This book concentrates primarily on their professional partnership, but does give reference to their close personal relationship; they felt like brother and sister, he would be a pallbearer at her funeral.
The book is small, approximately 8” x 6”, slim but very nicely done, the pages have a glossy, satisfying finish under one’s fingers, with the signature robin’s egg blue color of Tiffany’s used as accents on the front cover and spine, and sprinkled throughout. Ms. De La Hoz’s prose is not extensive, concentrating primarily on the various costumes used in each film, but is easy to read and has enjoyable, interesting vignettes such as the initial meeting between the two in 1953 at Givenchy’s fashion house, where he anticipated another Hepburn, Katharine.
The highlight is the wealth of beautiful photographs used, both in color and black in white. For each film presented there is at least one accompanying photo of every costume Ms. Hepburn wore. The author has chosen well, the one minor flaw is that several of the more colorful creations such as the vivid deep fuchsia gown worn in “Breakfast at Tiffany’s”, and the bright floral dress used in the flower market photo sequence in “Funny Face”, are presented in black and white. Some of my favorites are a color publicity shot for “Funny Face” a strapless white gown sprinkled with a delicate pale green design, another color head shot of a gorgeous Hepburn for “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” in one of the more sensational hats, black with a white swan’s down puff in front, another from the same is a publicity shot inside Tiffany’s with a gleeful Holly Golightly at table having breakfast at Tiffany’s coffee and a Danish. She is wearing the iconic black evening gown from the opening sequence, one glove clad arm with her cigarette holder flung over her head while the other hoists her coffee cup in a toast. There is a glamorous yet oddly wistful promotional shot of Ms. Hepburn with her hair swept back from her face, an ethereal gauze stole floating around her swan neck for “L’Interdit”, the perfume created for her by Messer. Givenchy. From “How to Steal a Million” there is a pair of delightful color publicity shots of Ms. Hepburn and her co-star Peter O’Toole. In one she wears one of her sexiest outfits; the black lace cocktail dress accessorized with black lace patterned stockings and a matching black lace mask. In the other perched on the trunk of a sleek canary yellow sports car with O’Toole at the wheel, she wears a snappy matching suit and pillbox hat. Finally there is a black and white photo of Audrey looking over her bare shoulders and back clad in a classic full skirted formal gown with a full panel flowing from the back that gives the effect of a train. She wore this to the premiere of her film "The Nun's Story" in 1959.
These are just a few; there are many other memorable illustrations, culminating at the end with the two of them circa late 1970’s early 1980’s smiling out at the viewer in glowing color, their affection for each other quite apparent.
For aficionados of Audrey Hepburn such as I, or Hubert De Givenchy, film or fashion, this is a charming, worthwhile addition to one’s library, and a fitting celebration to a legendary, creative pair.
- Hardcover: 176 pages
- Publisher: Running Press Adult; 1 edition (12 April 2016)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0762460172
- ISBN-13: 978-0762460175
- Product Dimensions: 14.9 x 2.2 x 20 cm
- Boxed-product Weight: 499 g
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- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 47,219 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)