Coco Chanel: With WWI, women took over men’s jobs and Coco was there to lead the way. As a orphan, Coco brought independence and determination into the fashion industry. She introduced elegant, relaxed and functional women’s clothing, not to mention the Jersey knit suit women of the 21st century couldn’t live without. Coco came from nothing and started as a struggling hat designer; but her famous perfume Chanel No.5 was the first designer perfume. Today, fashion couldn’t survive without her. We owe fake gem jewelry, the women’s suite and confidence to her.
Audrey Hepburn: It only took one movie of Hepburn’s for those oversized glasses we all wear to become one of the most long lasting trends ever. Hepburn wasn’t even known to be that into fashion, but her simple elegance and natural beauty made her and her red lipstick one of the most influential people of all time. We owe all our little black dresses, capri pants and ballet flats to Hepburn, who made them mainstream throughout all her movies.
Jackie O: She brought the refined, sophisticated and preppy look into the American spotlight. She made a miniskirt look beautiful, not sexy, and she gave the tall slender look a new appeal. But it was her huge oval sunglasses, A-line sleeveless dresses, Hermes head scarves and most of all her boldness to wear jeans and Ked sneakers in public that make her the most followed fashion icon of all time. Jackie O. also brought European style, especially French style, into the American spotlight with her knowledge of foreign designers and passion for the continent.
Anna Wintour: Without dear Anna any fashion trend that has ever hugged out hips or embraced our toes would not have ever happened. Since 1988 Wintour has decided everything that happens in the fashion industry. If she puts a fur on the front cover, so does every other magazine across the world. If she doesn’t like a designer’s collection, they alter it. Anna Wintour rules the fashion world. It is not her bob and collared shirts that make her a fashion icon. It is her ability and confidence to define what people should be wearing and why. She has hand picked and nurtured some of the most creative designers of our generation. It was Wintour that picked Alexander Wang out of a Gap contest and gave him the life he always dreamt of. Because of Wintour, Wang’s label can be found in every Barney’s Co-op from Philadelphia to Los Angeles and every country throughout the world. Without her, fashion would take a shocking hit.
Marilyn Monroe: Well, hello curves. Finally a woman that made it okay to have a full-bodied figure. Without Monroe’s success with curvy sex appeal, women everywhere would be out of luck. Monroe’s impact on the fashion world wasn’t about what she wore but how she wore it. This woman exuded confidence. Her red pout, platinum blonde hair and tight fitting clothes showed the world exactly what she had to offer. Monroe was no more than a sex goddess that was portrayed as classy while doing it. She created a character for herself and she practiced it. She has become a persona that one can take on at anytime. The fact that she studied herself and knew how to be perfectly photogenic is a trait that women have been trying to master for decades. Yet she is the one that made it all happen.