STYLE ICONS VOL 3 – Bombshells

Written by


  • Marilyn Monroe
  • Brigitte Bardot
  • Raquel Welch
  • Sophia Loren
  • Mata Hari
  • Bettie Page
  • Audrey Hepburn
  • Jane Russell

The most incandescent example of Bombshells is Marilyn Monroe. Her strange combination of ghostly pale skin, childlike face and innate erotic cunning render her hard to date. Unlike modern actresses, we can’t sense the stylist behind her clothes, the heavy hand of a makeup artist or a photographer’s overbearing concept. Clearly and hauntingly, her image belongs to her and it is equal parts spectral nymph, mid-century beach bunny, haughty heiress and child star. With an hourglass body and a face like Shirley Temple, the oddity of Monroe is her wholesomeness. She could sell diamonds or milk. She looked naked in a white cotton dress and perfectly dignified in the nude. She loved her clothes. Some say she sawed off one stiletto shoe heel a fraction lower to deepen the sway of her hips. Clearly, she wasn’t happy, and this just serves to deepen the myth and her lure. Her own words, “Being a sex symbol is heavy load” could speak for all of the women who traded infamy for scandal and some scrap of security.

Bettie Page, the underground queen of silk stockings, light bondage and leopard skin bikinis claimed very practical reasons for being a pin-up model, preferring the work to “pounding a typewriter eight hours a day”.

They were a breed that we have not seen the like of again. Bombshells.