With her outspoken, independent nature and unique sense of style, Katharine Hepburn was in many ways the original downtown girl—just in a different era. The Hollywood leading lady, who starred in legendary films like Morning Glory and Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner, epitomized the modern woman, and her strong and sophisticated performances were matched by equally spirited sartorial choices (it’s these reasons and more that made her a source of inspiration for Rebecca’s new jewelry collection). A pioneer of androgynous fashion, Katharine favored khakis and open collared shirts during a time when stockings and girdles were the norm—and her jurisdiction over her wardrobe extended to the big screen as well.
Now, the style icon’s career is being honored in a new exhibition at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts: “Katharine Hepburn: Dressed for Stage and Screen.” Through Jan. 12, viewers can see 40 costumes that commemorate the actress’s award-winning performances as well as film clips, movie posters, and archival photographs of Katharine dressed in the outfits on display. We can’t wait to check out the wears of the woman who taught us not to sacrifice style for comfort, and above all, never to conform to anybody else’s definition of style. Remember: “If you obey all the rules, you will miss all the fun.”