Monday, March 9, 2015

SULTRY FASHION ICON; Lauren Bacall THE LOOK By Polly Guerin

With her sultry style, raspy voice and Oscar-nominated career, Lauren Bacall epitomized Hollywood glamour, influenced fashionistas for decades and left lasting impression on the fashion industry..  One of her famous one liners, "I'm not a has been, I am a will be," says it all about the 20-year old New York City native, who captured Humphrey Bogart's heart as well as legions of fans who idolized and covet her memory. As a screen siren she had a very deep sense of integrity and she embodied a certain level of tasteful dressing,that was just smart.                                                 Bacall had a commanding presence and lit up any room she entered and the same holds true today in the  iconic show, "Lauren Bacall: The Look,"  at the Museum at FIT, which is currently showcasing  some her clothing collection, film clips and photographs. It is interesting to note that before her death, Bacall donated more than 700 pieces of clothing to the Fashion Institute of Technology, where a dozen so or more of them are on display at the exhibition. Footnotes let us know that the actress' signature look stemmed from a sense of insecurity---as she stated lowering her chin and gazing with hooded yes to steady her nerves. Agray corridor leads to the main exhibition room, one wall covered with photographs, Playbills and magazine clips about Bacall.Bacall go t her start as a model  in the Garment District and following that short-lived stint, she was discovered by the celebrated editor Diana Vreeland, who gave Bacall a cover in Harper's Bazaar.Then she went on to Hollywood, and dropped her given name of "Betty" and added a second "l" to her surname.
Unlike other starlets she maintained her star quality status without every giving away too much of her personal life. The great shoe designer Ferragamo said, "She was a very special woman and a true example of grace and class."
   You are in for a treat!  In the main gallery, a large screen plays a clip of the l968  CBS special, Bacall and the Boys: which was filmed in Paris to showcase the fall collections from Pierre Cardin, Yves Saint Laurent, Marc Bohan and Emanuel Ungaro.
    Look for the Norman Norell pink wool coat with jumbo pink rhinestone buttons that Bacall wore in the 1964 film, "Sex and the Single Girl," and the the packable, technical Cardine dress, designed by Pierre Cardin, which women can carry in a paper bag.
  An astounding 740 items from the late actress's personal belongings will be auctioned by Bonhams on March 31 and April 1 as "The Lauren Bacall collection," in their New York Madison Avenue galleries. So now anyone with thousands of bucks to spare can own treasures from Bacall's jewelry, fine art and object d'art collection, but do not expect to find any of the actress's clothing up for will find many of them featured in the "The Look," exhibition.

Ta Ta Darlings...I'm off to see the collection again this Wednesday for another tour of the galleries. Fan mail welcome at Do check Polly's Blogs on Just click in the left hand column to a Blog of your interest on fashion, remarkable women, visionary men and poetry.


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