Posted on February 18, 2010

Elegance ~ What defines it? Where has it gone?

Audrey Hepburn/ Catherine Deneuve/ elegance/ grace/ Grace Kelly
 One of my girlfriends and I recently had this discussion over lunch.  When I think of elegance, immediately Audrey Hepburn, Grace Kelly, Princess Diana and Catherine Deneuve come to mind.  There was thought and care that went in to style, clothing and behaviour that seems not to be as present as it once was.

Ageless beauties
    The styles exuded grace and beauty.  I love that women and men took pride in the way they dressed.  Clothing showing undergarments was unheard of .  No pants on the ground! 
Dita looking fabulous!  I love her coat!
Most of my clothing is tailored to fit me perfectly.  I prefer to wear dresses and skirts, a heel to an Ugg, a trouser to a jean, and I love to accessorize.  I like to wear a pretty flower or vintage brooch on my coat.  I receive many smiles and compliments when I wear them!          
          

                                                                              Vogue

I enjoy the ritual of getting dressed ~ sitting at my dressing table applying make-up, spritzing perfume, styling my hair, etc..  I certainly do not spend all of my time doing this.  I have three children.  I have a very busy life! 
  Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers in Shall We Dance
The definition for elegance ~ refinement, grace, and beauty in movement, appearance, or manners.  Tasteful opulence in form, decoration, or presentation.
Catherine Deneuve ~ always chic
Whilst at an airport recently, my husband and I needed to ride a shuttle to another terminal.  During that ride, there were several people seated while an elderly lady was tightly holding onto a rail, trying not to fall as the driver quickly drove from one terminal to the other.  My husband and I were also standing.  Once we got off the shuttle, I asked my husband when people became this way.  I was shocked, and saddened, that not one person offered their seat to her.
Grace on her wedding day.  Isn’t she a vision?
Is it that people no longer care for eachother? I do not accept busy lifestyles as a reason. Are there not enough role models? Afterall, it only takes a moment to say hello, thank you, please, you’re welcome, sir, madam, and have a nice day/evening.  To hold a door for someone.  I teach my children this on a daily basis. I am proud to say my younger son recieved an award for Most Respectful Student at his school, and my other son and daughter have also been recognized for kind acts. Whew! They really are listening 😉

                                                                                  

Audrey and Grace presenting at the Academy Awards
I believe that graciousness begins with parents, teachers, adults so children can learn.  Being gracious is not only acts of kindness, patience, and courtesy but being generous in spirit ~ including social graces, empathy and tolerance. 
Audrey Hepburn
There are times in life when it seems to takes a little more effort to be gracious than to be difficult.  Perhaps we are a society that has become short of listening, empathising and understanding?  If everyone showed a bit more graciousness, it will make the world a better place.

                                                                                 
                                                                        Au Revoir!  xoxo, B
                                                                             

                                                                                   

                                                                             

                                                                               

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  • Castles Crowns and Cottages February 18, 2010 at 4:23 am

    Oui, je suis complètement d'accord avec vous! I wear skirts, pearls, beads, diamonds (what I have!) to school where I work because elegance is a lost art and I will live it as long as I can. Amongst all these beauties (your photos are sumptuous), Audrey is my pick; she had dark hair like me and a small frame. Nothing over-sexed chez elle, but her simplicity spoke volumes of CHIC and elegance.

    Beautiful post my dearest….Anita

  • Bonjour Madame February 18, 2010 at 5:31 am

    This is a most wonderful post and very thought provoking. I think you are right that elegance is more than the clothes you wear it's how you treat others and carry yourself. I love the photos!

  • Couture Carrie February 18, 2010 at 9:26 am

    Gorgeous post, darlings! These women are so iconic and lovely!

    xoxox,
    CC

  • BonjourRomance February 18, 2010 at 3:34 pm

    Bonjour,

    Bravo, you have hit every point on the true definition of elegance perfectly! The airport story is sad but there are people left in the world who would have offered their seat. Your husband, mine, all our new blogger friends I am sure!

    How wonderful to hear about your sweet kids. It only takes a moment for the simple niceties and keeping the lingerie on the inside just for starters…

    Bonne soirée my elegant friend!

  • Lara Harris February 18, 2010 at 7:35 pm

    Beautiful post! 🙂

  • Mademoiselle Frou-Frou February 18, 2010 at 11:18 pm

    you appreciate a classic, refined beauty…i love how you can see elegance in each picture!
    xox alison

  • *Chic Provence* February 21, 2010 at 10:04 am

    I just watched Breakfast at Tiffany's the other night..nostalgic for a lost era of graciousness…even in our beloved Paris things are…”different” now..but congratulations on raising wonderful children! I also think that in the south, things are still somewhat more gracious than most other regions in US..

    🙂

    Kit

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