The Chic List: Style secrets I’ve learned from Audrey

Fashion columnist and influencer Joanne Hegarty on the enduring influence of Audrey Hepburn.

We live in a world so fast-moving, you’ll soon be able to buy a Prada outfit from the Meta store to dress your social-media avatar (and if you need to google that sentence, I don’t blame you!).

Wearing a much-loved skirt from The Row and versatile top from Arket

YouTube beauty influencers are complaining they are burnt out from posting so many video tutorials and are now switching careers to the wellbeing industry.

Meanwhile, TikTok is throwing out new fashion trends faster than you can say: ‘Are you a Coastal Grandma (dressing in classic styles of wealthy middle-aged women) or a Coconut Girl (pastel shades and crochet tops)?’

As an antidote to this, I took myself off to the new Tiffany exhibition at London’s Saatchi Gallery (which is on until 19 August) to inhale the room dedicated to Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s. And it was mesmerising. There were audible gasps from women when they caught sight of the black Givenchy dress she wore in the film. And I adored the behind-the-scenes photographs: Audrey’s allure is as powerful today as it was in 1961.

Audrey Hepburn in that gasp-inducing Givenchy dress

How amazing – in an age where everyone is obsessed with the next, next, next – that one woman can leave such a style legacy. Reassuring, too, because when it comes to my own wardrobe, I feel constantly chasing the next new piece is a dangerous game. And I am not alone: people are always asking me how to find their forever style – which, of course, is exactly what Audrey did so well. These are my rules…

  • Cultivate a smaller wardrobe filled with good-quality pieces that won’t date quickly and you’ll love wearing over and over. I’d much rather invest in one standout, beautifully made item than buy ten things from Zara.
  • Keep a wish list of pieces you really want and pounce when you can afford them. I promise you’ll love them all the more.
  • When adding a newbie to your collection, imagine all the ways you can wear it with your existing pieces. Also, is it something that will work for day and, dressed up, evening?
  • Search for statement pieces of jewellery and shoes that elevate outfits. I love gold sandals this time of year – they seamlessly slot in with everything I own.

THE NEXT BIG TREND

Our focus might be on summer dresses right now, but just around the corner is the big blazer. As seen on the Prada catwalk (above), the new tailoring about to be, well, huge, is all about the power shoulder. Game of American football, anyone?

CUFF LOVE

Double wrist cuffing is the fashion folk’s latest jewellery trend. Think like iconic designer Elsa Peretti and wear a large silver or gold cuff on each wrist. Cuff, £90, wolfandbadger.com

MOST WANTED

I love an independent brand and my current favourite is Labeca London for its bold two-pieces. This maroon duo is just the ticket for summer dinner parties and weddings. Waistcoat, £110, and trousers, £110, labecalondon.com

Follow me on Instagram @thestylistandthewardrobe

IMAGE: VICTORIA METAXAS