Cinematic footwear: Audrey Hepburn in Roman Holiday
Footwear has always played a vital role in film and been a key feature in its most emblematic costumes. Footwear sets trends and inspires filmmakers, but the opposite is also true: designers feed off the styles they see up on the big screen.
Shoes appearing in films ignite fashion trends and have the potential to revolutionise what we choose to walk around in. In order to showcase this potential, at O.SUR we are kicking-off a series of posts on cinematic fashion and footwear.
We’ve chosen to first shine the spotlight on Audrey Hepburn, one of history’s most iconic film stars. Through two film classics, we will see just how important her costume design was and how the footwear she donned became a trend-setting star of its own. In today’s post we are venturing into Roman Holiday. Tag along for the ride!
Audrey Hepburn’s sandals in Roman Holiday
Roman Holiday (1953) was Audrey Hepburn’s breakout role. Her talent and immense style won the hearts of millions of spectators. Indeed, one of the brightest stars in Hollywood was born.
Edith Head was chosen as the costume designer for Hepburn, whose character lives a double life in the film. On the one hand, she plays Princess Ann, who dons lavish gowns, expensive jewellery and uncomfortable heels that cause her trouble during official receptions.
On the other, she plays the casual young woman wandering the streets of Rome in the peak of summer. In these scenes, Hepburn wears simple blouses, long skirts and her unmistakeable neck scarf.
What about her footwear, though? When Ann wants to blend in to enjoy the Eternal City, she dons a pair of classically-inspired sandals that match her outfit brilliantly and become the gold standard of footwear thanks to her graceful, ever elegant stride in them.
Audrey Hepburn and her friendship with Ferragamo
Salvatore Ferragamo met Audrey Hepburn on the set of the film and was immediately captivated:
“Audrey Hepburn‘s long, slim foot is in perfect proportion to her height. She is a true artist and a true aristocrat. Audrey is always natural and completely unaffected, whether she is acting or buying shoes or handbags. She can talk intelligently and knowledgeably on philosophy, art, astronomy, and the theatre”.
As a result of their encounter and a symbol of their friendship, the designer created a pair of magnificent ballet flats, with a very low heel, that highlighted all the traits that Salvatore saw in Audrey. This is one great example of the eternal bond between footwear and art.
With our new Desiderata collection, we wanted to pay homage to classical Mediterranean sandals like the ones worn by Audrey in the film. Have you seen our Denia model? Its timeless lines and contrasting white ice and marine blue colours fit perfectly into any style.
What do you think about Audrey’s costumes in Roman Holiday? Did you know about her friendship with Ferragamo? In our next post we are going to take a look at Audrey Hepburn’s timeless style in Breakfast at Tiffany’s. Interested? Keep an eye out on our blog!