Audrey Hepburn - The History of an Early Up-Cycled Oscar Dress

Posted on 27 February 2014

If I could be a dress, I know exactly which one I would be.  Every year, Oscar season reminds me one of my all time favorite dresses. It's the most written about Oscar dress in history.  It has been voted the best dress every worn by a nominee to the Academy Awards by magazines, designers and the general public. It is simple, understated and timeless. 

Audrey Hepburn Givenchy Oscar Dress


The famous dress was originally designed by Edith Head in 1953 for Audrey Hepburn to wear as Princess Anne in Roman Holiday,  The original ensemble included a cap and bolero style jacket.

Audrey Hpeburn Roman Holiday Oscar Dress

Perhaps she was the original up-cycled fashion enthusiast! Ethical fashion wasn't even a term used in the 1950s, but having grown up during WWII, Audrey particularly hated waste. When the Oscar nominations were announced that year, it was only fitting that she used a dress she already had in her closet.

Audrey Hpeburn Roman Holiday Oscar Dress 2

Hubert de Givenchy performed his magic on the original dress, transforming it into something Oscar worthy. Audrey called it her "lucky" dress and she wore it when she accepted the award for best actress (her only Oscar) in 1954 at the Academy awards.

Audrey Hepburn Dress Worn by Audrey Hepburn Oscar Dress worn by Audrey Hepburn

The floral white organdy fit and flare dress was simply utter perfection.

Oscar Dress Worn by Audrey Hepburn  Givenchy Oscar Dress Audrey Hepburn 

The décolleté bateau neckline and cinched waist perfectly emphasized Audrey's petite features and delicate frame.

Audrey Hepburn Oscar Dress Details

The dress sold in 2011 for $140,000 through Kerry Taylor auctions.  I begged my family to do a fundraiser and buy it for me, but alas, they declined.  I guess I'll have to be content with photographs.  For now. 

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