Grace Kelly: From Movie Star to Princess

Yesterday, I had the chance to catch TIFF Bell Lightbox’s exhibition, “Grace Kelly: From Movie Star to Princess”. In honour of the event (and outing), I wore this look inspired by Grace Kelly herself.

I wore a pale blue dress from Forever XXI, a cognac Kelly bag and a vintage leopard topper. I think the colour of my dress echoes Kelly’s cool, composed elegance and the bag is one of her signatures! At the exhibition, I got a chance to see the sac à dépêches Kelly herself toted on her white gloved arm.

The whole city has been taken over by posters of the image behind me. I tried to mirror her pose in this picture. I think it’s funny how are dresses are similar yet very different at the same time. The dress was designed by Edith Head, who designed the costumes in the film that won her the gold statuette, Country Girl.  To be honest, I was very disappointed with the dress in real life. Pictures always make the colour out to be a gorgeous pale greyish turquoise, but the actual colour is more of a muted green-gray. The dress kind of lost its mystique to me, and I wish TIFF displayed it better as well.

Kelly was known for her elegant, ladylike style, and I channelled that with this leopard cropped jacket. While the Princess might have been privvy to mink, I brought the silhouette into modern times with a punchy leopard print and oversized buttons.

Naturally, I wasn’t allowed to take photos inside the exhibit, and tried to take some at the stop and repeat on the way out, but was accosted by nosy volunteers! I tried to tell them that everyone was taking pictures on this wall, but I was out of luck that day… It’s fun to see all of her magazine covers and how Kelly was revered as a symbol of beauty and talent.

The fashion at the exhibition was extensive, they had many garments chronicling her rise as an actress to a Princess.  My favourite was undoubtedly the replica of her Helen Rose wedding gown.  While it was only a replica (the real one is definitely locked away in the Grimaldi forum), it was captivating! I found it interesting how the costume team at MGM was behind her gown, and that it only took six weeks to create! (While it took the team at McQueen six months to create a bad copy of Kelly’s original).

The exhibit closes this Sunday, January 22, so if you’re a member (you get in free), or a fan of the American Princess, it’s a must see! Don’t expect endless hours spent admiring articles and artifacts, but a true fan would be delighted to be in the presence of her beautiful things.

”If there is one thing that is foreign to me it is shopping for pleasure. On the other hand, I believe that it is right to honor all those who create beautiful things and give satisfaction to those who see me wearing them.” – Grace Kelly