Sunday, November 1, 2009

Style Icon: Ali MacGraw

Every winter, I pull out all my wool hats, chunky scarves, tall boots, and sport coats with hope to come up with ensembles that even closely resemble the ones worn by Ali MacGraw in the early 70s. Meet my ultimate winter style icon: Ali MacGraw.


A true original, Ali MacGraw, didn't only represent the late 60s and early 70s Bohemian-meets-American-Prep style: she was one of the people that invented it. Best known for her portrayal of the impossibly stylish Jennifer Cavalleri in the 1970 crying fest The Love Story, Ali began her career as a stylist and assistant editor at Harper's Bazaar. She soon caught the eye of the legendary Diana Vreeland, and became her assistant at Vogue. Diana and Ali worked on defining American style in the mid 1960s when American fashion designers were not seen as groundbreaking in the least.

But, being stunningly gorgeous, the camera soon turned on Ali and soon she was one of the highest paid models, including a stint as the face of Chanel. Ali’s style directly influenced the early career of Ralph Lauren (including Diane Keaton’s clothes for Annie Hall) and to this day remains a muse to Michael Kors.

Ali for Chanel in 1966.

Ali looks adorable in this preppy outfit. Who wants her jacket? Me.

Ali in her signature 'Ali Cap'.

Ali in head-to-toe purple.

My favourite Ali outfit: flapper-meet-Halston. I'm loving the head wrap decorated with a simple flower brooch.

She wears big flowers in her hair.

Her long, shiny hair was her favourite accessory. I love her minimal look: no make-up, freckles and a little neck-tie.

Another amazing hair-wrap. I'm in love with the front slit and the little belt on this dress. I'm going to guess: Halston.

Ali manages to pull embroidered blouses and long skirts without looking like a hippie or a tacky country singer.

Ali looks like a Russian princess in an all-white winter ensemble topped with a fur hat.

Always effortless.

The coolest couple of the times, Ali and Steve McQueen, looking cute and casual(I wish they had babies).

Ali in the early 1990s looking fresh and lovely in white and turquoise.

At 71, still impossibly effortless.


Further reading:

Bella Donna: Ali MacGraw

6 comments :

Maggie said...

Ali is and was simply gorgeous. I read the article in Vogue about the model that had a custom replica made of the camel coat Ali wore in Love Story. It got me on a search to find a pattern and fabric to make one myself. It's always fun to link to someone who likes what you do.

Anonymous said...

OMG. I love Ali and your column and photos on her are amazing. How did you get them? Good job! It's nice to see a person's natural beauty sans the make up and all.

Marina said...

Ali McGraw is still and has always been simply stunning! I'm so inspired by her! I once heard that she was on Richard Blackwell's worst dressed list. I guess knowing who you are and thinking independently of current fashion dictates was considered unacceptable at that time. Ali has always been true to herself and her personal style... thank goodness! Her inimitable bohemian, gorgeously classy chic is one-of-a-kind. Others may try to emulate her, but it never quite seems the same. Thanks for sharing some of these beautiful photos with us... great blog!

It Girl (Anya) said...

Thank you for your comments! It's great to know there are other Ali style lovers out there! There is a great article on Ali in the current issue of Vanity Fair!

http://www.vanityfair.com/hollywood/features/2010/03/ali-mcgraw-201003

Anonymous said...

today invested in another ali-cap of my own... crocheted in scarlet red with a huge flower on the side!
she's so inspirational and stylish :)

Anonymous said...

WHAT CAN YOU SAY ABOUT ALI MACGRAW.THAT SHE HAS A GREAT SENSE OF STYLE,AND MADE EVERYTHING SHE WORE LOOK GREAT.

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