Calling all fashion fans, if you’re in Melbourne this week, go pop by Bendigo (2 hours by V/Line Regional Train) to catch the “Grace Kelly Style Icon” exhibition. It ends this Sunday, 17 June. With the Bendigo Art Gallery targeting to end at 140,000 people for this exhibition, make sure you book before you go. Weekends have been sold out and there are only 3-4 slots available. It’s so popular that on Saturdays, the gallery is open until midnight!
I happened to be visiting good family friends at Bendigo in March and thought I’d drop by to find out what’s the fuss. I was more familiar with Audrey Hepburn of “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” rather than Grace… who?
Little did I know, that I was about to discover a classic beauty, one of timeless grace.
As I pored through the old film movie posters, clips of “High Society” (a movie she starred together with singing legends Frank Sintra, Bing Crosby and Louis Armstrong), the array of vintage dresses of Yves St Laurent, Dior and Givenchy… I discovered the appeal….
It was a princess story.
Deep down at the hearts of girls and girls-at-heart, is a longing for beauty, a longing to be swept off our feet and to live happily after. It’s the fairytale we long for. Much like Kate Middleton who went from commoner to princess, Grace’s story was one that went from an on-screen princess to a real life princess.
I got lost in the beauty of the story also through the beauty of her gowns she wore to the Oscars, the dresses she wore on set, the dress she wore when she got engaged to the Prince of Monaco. The wedding dress in the exhibition is a replica as the original one is too delicate to be shipped over from Philadelphia. As I walked on, I wished I could reach into the glass and touch the dresses that befitted her new status as a new princess. Through the years as she aged, she maintained elegance in her taste for clothes and accessories. The famous “Kelly Bag” by Hermès was named after her as she carried it so often. She was said to be one of the first few ladies who dared to carry a roomy bag. Urban legend has it that she used the bag to cover her bump from the Paparazzi during her pregnancy.
Her story, just like her beauty, is one of timeless grace.
- Jael Chng