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Re-Imagining Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany's

In this first episode of Re-Imagining: Movie Icons, The Africa Channel and Vanichi magazine recaptured an African Holly Golightly having breakfast at a chic restaurant in Ghana.

The Audrey Hepburn Style

Of the Audrey Hepburn movies that are highly memorable, Audrey Hepburn’s role as Holly Golightly in Breakfast at Tiffany’s created an impressive fashion statement in the 60’s. Holly’s trademark black dress and black elbow gloves made Givenchy a household fashion label.

The Audrey Hepburn look includes a sleeveless black dress, black elbow gloves, pearl necklace, button earrings, kitten heels, dark armored sunglasses, a tiara, and a silver cigarette holder.

This iconic look symbolizes luxury, status, royalty, and a refined taste for high fashion and class. The look showcases accessories like pearls, earrings, sunglasses, hats, and hair.

Even after five decades, the Audrey Hepburn look is still coveted by millions of women around the world. The black dress has evolved into the little black dress, which is an essential fashion staple in every woman’s wardrobe. The black dress is chic, sophisticated, versatile and loved for it’s slimming effect on the torso.

Although women’s taste for jewelry has evolved over five decades, jewelry still remains a necessary fashion item in a woman’s wardrobe.

The Model: Holly Golightly Re-Imagined

In this episode, fashion model Elle Drane was elated to recapture Audrey Hepburn in an African costume fit for a queen.

Audrey Hepburn is one of her favorite movie icons, so Elle eased right into the character. In Elle’s own words, “I didn’t have to do much research, Audrey Hepburn is in me.”

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Re-Imagining Audrey Hepburn

The Africanized Audrey Hepburn look is not only luxurious and glamorous. She is regal, royal, a queen of the Ashanti Kingdom in Ghana. To recapture this look, Elle Drane’s hair is twisted into a high five layered bob that rests on her head like a crown.

In place of pearls, her slender neck is gracefully decorated with cowrie neckpieces designed by TEGAA, an ethical fashion brand that crafts unique pieces from the Gambia.

One such unique piece includes jewelry made from cowrie shells gotten from sea snails on the African coast. Instead of button earrings, Elle wears dangling earrings designed by Ammanii, a jewelry label that focuses on handcrafted jewelry from Egypt.

The recaptured look is rounded off nicely with a sleeveless ankle length black dress stitched with a white and black fabric with bold African prints similar to African wax prints and ankara. African wax prints are indigenous to West African countries especially Ghana, Nigeria, Togo, and Cote d’Ivoire.

This dress is designed by Sarayaa, a fashion label that is driven by a passion to globalize African fashion by combining African fabric with contemporary cuts and designs. Finally, Elle wears white elbow length gloves in place of Audrey Hepburn’s signature black gloves.

This Africanized style with Audrey Hepburn dress is very regal and luxurious thanks to the high bun and of course cowrie neck piece. In pre-colonial Africa, cowrie shells were highly valued and used as a form of currency to trade.

Because of its economic value, only those of royalty could afford to wear cowrie shells as jewelry, and cowries became a sign of affluence.

So which look do you prefer? Audrey Hepburn look or the re-imagined look?

All 10 episodes, plus a bonus overview, are currently available on The Africa and Demand Africa.