We all know I love red lipstick, in fact I think if you know me it’s common knowledge that 99% of the time I will be wearing it. Therefore, when I sawListerinewere offering a free lipstick and one of the shades was red – I simply could not miss out on such a bargain!
As I’ve said many times before, I love finding high quality drug store Brands and I can definitely confirm that Barry M is one of them. They’ve been around for as long as I can remember – I always used to buy their Nail Polishes and I love that before a lot of other Brands followed the trend, they have always produced a huge variety of unique shades and dared to break the makeup boundaries.
Out of the three shades available – which are all products from BARRY M’s current Collection and retail from just £4.99, I pickedRed My Lips. If you’re not a red kinda girl like myself, then there are ten other Satin Super Slick Lip Paints and two of them are offered by Listerine – Peachy Keen and Berry-licious, which are perfect for the Summer!
Red My Lips is a beautiful blue toned 1950s red, my favourite of course and is produced with a satin shiny finish. However, if you’re a matte lover like me – don’t be discouraged! Although the lipstick is a satin formula, it is incredibly pigmented and long lasting, which can be pretty hard to find from my experience. Furthermore, what’s great about this product is that it doesn’t feel sticky on your lips, which is a huge bonus as I often find a lot of glossy products do and that can be very uncomfortable. This beauty is also infused with Shea Butter and Vitamin E, so leaves your lips feeling moisturized and definitely not dry!
The packaging for BARRY M’s Super Satin Slick Lip Paint’s is a gorgeous silver chrome, which contrasts beautifully with the vibrant red shade. The product itself has a gorgeous BM Logo imprinted on the lipstick and I especially love the italic handwriting, it’s so classy and chic.
I’ve noticed that BARRY M have vastly expanded their lipstick range and have a huge variety of different products available, which is brilliant! I’m definitely looking forward to trying more products as I’m intrigued to see if the rest of their beauty buys are as good as their Satin Lipsticks!
Ultimately, I absolutely love this lipstick and I definitely hope to add more BARRY M products to my makeup collection!
Today marks the Birth Date of probably my favourite human who ever blessed the Earth with their presence, the beautiful soul that was Marilyn Monroe. As she left it at such a young age, it’s almost incomprehensible to believe that she would be ninety one years old if she was still alive.
Each year I like to pay tribute to my angel by writing about the incredible person she was, the unique life she lived and all of her accomplishments in such a short space of time. I feel as a devoted fan of Marilyn’s that it is my duty to help spread the truth about this beautiful soul, by aiming to let society learn about the real woman she was and to not be influenced by the unsubstantiated conspiracies and myths.
Therefore, instead of writing my usual styled posts on my favourite girl, I have decided to be slightly more creative and this time share a number of anecdotes that you may or may not know about Marilyn. In doing this, I hope that it will give you an insight into the kindhearted soul she was and hopefully you will take a moment to think about her on this very special day.
When Marilyn was a little girl and occasionally spent time with her mother, Gladys, she noticed a photo of a dark haired man with a mustache displayed in her home. The man bared a similar resemblance to one of her favourite Movie Stars; Clark Gable and Norma Jeane Baker liked to think of him as her father. She had loved going to the cinema ever since she was a child and must have seen Clark on the big screen many times. In reality, this man was Marilyn’s actual father – Charles Stanley Gifford, who had been seeing Gladys before she became pregnant. Ultimately, he never acknowledged Marilyn as his own and they never had any relationship.
On a happier note, many years later in November 1954, Marilyn would finally fulfill her childhood dream of meeting Gable at Romanoff’s, where The Seven Year Itch Wrap Party was being held in her honour. They danced with one another and shared how they would both love to work together, with Gable telling Marilyn, “You have the magic.” This wish would eventually happen in 1960, with The Misfits generally being cited as one of their best performances.
During Marilyn’s first marriage to James Dougherty, she noticed a cow on it’s own, standing in the rain. Deeply upset about this, when Jimmy returned home he saw his wife desperately trying to bring the cow inside the house, even asking him to help her do so. Jimmy’s nephew, Wes Kanteman recounted to Author Michelle Morgan about this sweet memory saying,
“The cow was a young Jersey Heffer that had beautiful eyes and Norma Jeane used to stand by her pen and just stare at her, remarking at how pretty she was. Then the torrential rain came one night and the cow was standing by the fence and Norma Jeane used to stand by her pen and just stare at her, remarking at how pretty she was. Then the torrential rain came one night and the cow was standing by the fence and Norma Jeane and apparently thought she wanted in so she opened the gate and was going to bring her into to the house. After much conversation about the matter, Uncle Jim convinced her that she belonged in her pen and Norma Jeane finally gave in and it was over, but she still thought that the cow would have been better off in the living room.”
On 1st June 1952, Marilyn turned 26 years old and celebrated by finding out she had landed the coveted role of Lorelei Lee in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, beating out the previous Top Blonde at 20th Century Fox – Betty Grable. She was to be starring opposite Jane Russell, who would be receiving $100,000 dollars compared to Marilyn’s contract salary of $500 per week – shocking, I know. Still, Marilyn didn’t complain and put her heart and soul into making one of her most iconic movies. However, when Marilyn found out she didn’t even have her own dressing room, despite being the star of the film, she finally spoke out and recalled this story to Journalist Richard Meryman for LIFE Magazine, which was released two days before her death in August 1962.
“I remember when I got the part in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes. Jane Russell – she was the brunette in it and I was the blonde. She got $200,000 for it, and I got my $500 a week, but that to me was, you know, considerable. She, by the way, was quite wonderful to me. The only thing was I couldn’t get a dressing room. Finally, I really got to this kind of level and I said, “Look, after all, I am the blonde, and it is Gentlemen Prefer Blondes!” Because still they always kept saying, “Remember, you’re not a star.” I said, “Well, whatever I am, I am the blonde!” And I want to say to the people, if I am a star, the people made me a star. No studio, no person, but the people did.”
Marilyn was a huge lover of animals and during her life owned quite a few pets, from dogs, to cats and even two parakeets called Butch and Bobo. During her time in New York she adopted a cat and to Marilyn’s delight, she became pregnant. She was so happy and looked after the beloved pet dearly, reading up on how to care for her during the pregnancy, repeatedly ringing her maid to check on how she was doing and spoiling her with treats. When the labour finally came during the middle of the night, Marilyn rang her good friend Norman Rosten, asking him to come over and help to which he politely declined and went back to sleep. He later said, “There was never a more spoiled prenatal cat in feline history.“
Marilyn was known to be extremely generous, even saying in her last interview, “I don’t understand why people aren’t a little more generous with another.” and it’s most definitely fair to say she followed what she believed in. Her giving nature didn’t just involve her friends, even acquaintances received this kind treatment as retold by Author Donald Spoto.
“Maggie Banks, an assistant choreographer, recalled that a wife of a company electrician was seriously ill. “I saw Marilyn hand the man a roll of bills; he started to cry, and Marilyn just hugged him and walked away.” Likewise, Evelyn Moriarty never forgot that Marilyn anonymously donated one thousand dollars to defray the funeral expenses of a crew member’s wife.”
Marilyn famously said, “I only knowI want to be wonderful.” and I think it’s definitely fair to say, although she may not have achieved true happiness, she the utmost worthy of being called wonderful.
Happy Birthday beautiful, I think of you daily and I love you dearly. ♡
If there’s one Makeup Brand which is currently outdoing itself lately it’s most definitely Makeup Revolution. Not only are their prices pretty damn amazing, but the quality of each product I’ve personally tried is truly exceptional. I’d go as far to say they rival quite a few major High End Brands!
As I’ve said before, when I’m fortunate enough to be able to visit a new City or Country, I try to see and experience all the new sights I can. However, being a huge makeup lover, one of the best things about shopping in a different place means new Brands and yes, maybe even a few, (not so old) favourites! Therefore, if you we’re thinking this was when Makeup Revolution would be returning to this post – you would be correct.
I think I can pretty much guarantee if you’re reading this, you probably love makeup as much as I do. Therefore, 99% of us have all experienced the dreaded moment when we open one of our beloved compacts and see the awful realization – it has completely smashed. With powder being one of my must have products, this was simply not acceptable and I had to find a replacement as soon as possible. Let’s be honest, no one wants the sweaty, foundation dripping look and when you’re in Barcelona and no longer have any powder – you know this is highly likely to happen.
However, fear not, the compact powder problem was soon sorted and in the process, yes you’re right, I did stumble across this beautiful lipstick – so ultimately there was a silver lining! I’ve said it once and we know I will continue to say it again and again, being the vintage girl I am, if I see a good red lipstick, it’s by a Brand I love and it’s a good price – you can definitely assume that I’m going to buy it.
I was pleasantly browsing through the makeup and stumbled across Makeup Revolution, knowing this Brand is available at home initially, I didn’t even think about buying something. Although, when I saw Dare and swatched it on my hand, I knew that assumption would quickly change. At under two euros – yes I’m being totally serious, I couldn’t miss up on such an incredible offer and quickly picked it up!
The lipstick is intensely pigmented, has a lovely soft creamy feel when applied and is very long lasting. We all know I’m a sucker for details and I love how the shade can be seen on the outer product. This is probably one of the cheapest lipsticks I own yet it’s one of the best quality – amazing right? If you’re a bit apprehensive about wearing a red shade then fear not, this colour is definitely an everyday rouge so great to start off with if you’re a red lipstick virgin.
Ultimately, the only downside I have is not even about the product itself! When finding the lipstick online to link in my review, I sadly cannot find this shade online to buy, which makes me think it’s either a new shade or has been discontinued. Once again, the glass is half full and there are three other red shades available, with the newestRubybeing the best dupe.
At just £1.00, you really can’t miss up on an offer like this, you could even buy all nine shades on Superdrug and this would still be cheaper than many high end lipsticks! On the other hand, a part of me wishes I’d not thought of that as I’m partially tempted to do that myself, oh dear.
The only constructive criticism I would give is I’d like to hope Makeup Revolution would release a few pink shades into the collection to add more versatility and options. Although saying that, there are many other lipsticks available from this Brand so I’m sure pink lovers can find their favourite shade!
I can definitely say that Makeup Revolution will continue to be one of my goto favourite Brands and in my heart I only wish I’d discovered it sooner! However, my Bank Account says otherwise – but that’s enough story!
The Balm is a must buy for any Vintage Girl out there – it’s up there with, Besamé and Benefit Cosmetics – beyond aesthetically appealing with it’s retro, old soul vibe and ultimately – authentic! Therefore, when I finally came to face to face with this beyond gorgeous brand for the first time, I simply had to purchase one of their beautiful products! Thanks to the modern world of technology, I had already discovered their beautiful liquid lipsticks and as this is my favourite beauty product, we all know which item I was going to buy.
After procrastinating between three shades; Devoted,SentimentalandLoyal– I decided to go with my first instinct and chose the original choice,Devoted. This colour is once again, my signature favourite shade to wear which is a deep, vibrant, blue toned ruby red and I can one hundred percent confirm, this colour does not disappoint! This is the first time I have worn the lipstick and I can honestly say I will probably be applying this all week. The shade looks exactly as advertised and I feel like I’ve stepped out of a 1950s Technicolour Movie.
If you’re not really a red lipstick kinda girl, you’ll be happy to know that The Balm have just released six, yes, six, (!) new liquid lipstick shades so you now have eighteen colours to choose from! Just promise me one thing, if you do end up buying them all then please, try not to blame me.
When applying the lipstick I noticed a unique mint scent coming from the product and honestly, it was quite refreshing to smell something different! Don’t get me wrong, I adore the sweet ingredients that are often used in lipsticks, but this fragrance further contributes to The Balm’s products standing out and being memorable. Plus, if you don’t like the mint aroma, there’s really no need to be put off from buying them, as it fades once it’s dried!
Furthermore, the packaging is so detailed and unique! I really appreciate when Brands take the time to not only make a good quality product but, also create something beautiful and classy, which you want to have pride of place on your Vanity Table. I think the majority of makeup lovers would agree that The Balm have truly outdone themselves with packaging and they definitely stand out from other Brands. I think the whole concept behind the product is so witty, very eye catching and most importantly – something different!
Cost wise, The Balm Cosmetics products are in the mid price range, with their liquid lipsticks being, £13.49 in stores and £14.99 online – strange, right? I’ve found that it’s usually the other way around, so I don’t really know why this is the case however, there is a silver lining! Superdrug currently have a 3 for 2 on a lot of their Brands in stores, (I’m not sure about online sadly) and The Balm is one of them, so remember that when you’re next browsing.
The only downside I can think of with The Balm Cosmetics is they are not stocked in every Superdrug, I’ve not yet to come across one in my hometown, (holds back the tears) so, if you’re someone who likes to buy beauty products in store only, this could be a problem. However, as I said previously, the products are just like advertised, so fear not! Debenhams also stock The Balm Cosmetics, so if you’re lucky your local store may have one and if not, it’s only a click away online.
I simply can’t emphasize enough how in love I am with this Brand, all of the products are so beautiful and are pretty much works of art and not just the liquid lipsticks – literally every single item! I can assure you when the sad day comes and my liquid lipstick runs out, I will most definitely be keeping the packaging and yes, maybe that’s too much, but for me? I think not. I may have waited years to finally own something from The Balm – but they most definitely met my dream expectations!
For red lipstick lovers,Ruby Woois without doubt known as the ultimate crimson shade to wear. It has been one of MAC’s best selling products for years and has celebrities likeDita Von Teesename it as one of her favourite colours to wear. As shocking as it sounds, I’ve never actually owned my own Ruby Woo, that is until now!
I knew that it was finally time I bought Ruby Woo when I saw that they were releasing a new Collection CalledMAC Shadescents. Six of their most popular colours have been specially repackaged to shade-match each lipstick – with a unique perfume available too.
I absolutely adore the special packaging and design, it is just beautiful and MAC have truly outdone themselves. I know a lot of people like the simple, sleek original design of their lipsticks but I much prefer this, it’s so mesmerizing! I’m actually tempted to buy the other shades in the Shadescents Collection just to have more of these beautiful products, however I like to think that even I’m not that frivolous!
I really hate to say this, but one big downfall of the Shadescent Ruby Woo is that the finish is different to the original lipstick! I bought this thinking I’d be getting the iconic matte texture, but for some reason this special edition is a retro matte instead. As much as I’d love to embrace the retro format, being a huge vintage lover myself, I much prefer matte. I find the retro matte finish to be a lot harsher to apply and feel and look pretty drying. My friend actually has an original Ruby Woo and I swatched both on my hand, the colour slightly varied and hers was a lot more glossy than mine. I am honestly so disappointed that for whatever reason MAC felt the need to change the format for the special edition, why try and fix something when it’s already perfect?
In all fairness, I did contact MAC with my issue and they offered to send me a new one, but I’d have to give my Shadescents back to them, although I’m pretty sure you can’t resell lipstick? I decided against this as I’d rather be able to repurchase it in the store and make sure it’s a matte finish and not a retro matte. I have a lot of MAC lipsticks, I’m guessing around 20, so I’m a huge fan of the Brand, but this is definitely something I was ultimately pretty disappointed with.
To emphasize how much retro matte isn’t for me, I only have one other lipstick with this finish –Relentlessly Red, which ironically I purchased because of the texture! I’ve checked the other shades in the collection and as far as I’m aware they all match the original finishes, it’s just Ruby Woo that was changed for some strange reason.
Ultimately, I’m pretty happy to have this in my collection, simply because it is extra beautiful with the special packaging. Who knows, maybe the retro matte format will grow on me the more I try and get used to it? Ironically enough, after wearing it again for this post today, I did actually quite like the retro matte texture! But I do definitely recommend putting on a good few layers with a lipstick brush first as like I said before, I found it to be quite harsh to apply without. I’ve noticed that I do seem to use a lot more product with a retro matte finish lipstick, compared to the matte textures.
Overall I have not lost faith in MAC, I just like to be as honest and authentic to others as I can be. I wouldn’t want others to buy the Shadescents Ruby Woo for the packaging and get a different format like I did. I love the colour and I’ll just make sure I purchase the original whenever I can.
All I have to say to MAC is, if it’s not broke – don’t fix it!
As soon as I discoveredBésame Cosmetics, I realized my dream Brand had been created and if you’re a vintage lover like myself – then I’m sure you’ll feel the same too. Bésame’s products are all inspired from actual vintage makeup which existed in the 1920s up to the 1960s and the packaging is also replicated to perfection. The historical research and dedication that has been used in creating all of the products is absolutely astounding and from lipstick to face powder they are each a work of art. Not only that, the brand is also cruelty free, which is just wonderful.
Therefore, when I discovered that Bésame was now being stocked on the UK website,cultbeauty, I knew that I had to add this amazing brand to my ever growing makeup collection. When I was looking through their lipsticks, I noticed each shade was named after a year, inspired by the shades released around that time, something so unique and such a wonderful idea. I was instantly drawn to, “1959 Red Hot Red” a lipstick which just so happened to be inspired by my absolute favourite – Marilyn!
This shade is described online as a, “bold, brazen warm red” and I would definitely agree with that statement. However, looking through the inspiration for this shade – photos ofMarilyn in Some Like It Hot (1959) – I noticed that she continued to wear her cold blue tone reds which complimented her fair skin. Although, on some pictures the shade did look slightly warmer and as the film is in black and white, I’m only basing my opinion colour photos.
Ultimately, I’m very happy to have this shade in my collection as it is the only Marilyn, “inspired” lipstick so far, but I feel it doesn’t suit me as well as cooler toned reds. However, I still absolutely love the colour, you really can’t go wrong with a bold red. I think if I could choose another shade to buy it would definitely be, “1945 American Beauty” which is described as a, “cool berry red” although the shade looks slightly darker on the swatch photo. However, I’ve seen the lipstick on Pin Up BloggerAshlyn Coco and it looks so beautiful on her, so it most definitely has my approval and is on my to buy list!
As I previously mentioned, the packaging for each lipstick is simply beyond beautiful, it’s chic, timeless and effortlessly glamorous. Their products are without doubt some of the most aesthetically pleasing available and so unique and committed to continuing the vintage style. Furthermore, the lipsticks are even created like the classic products from the Golden Age of Hollywood and the tip is perfect for applying the perfect cupids bow shaped lip. Not only is the lipstick an absolute dream for your eyes, just as much precision and design has gone into the making of the box. It truly feels like I own an authentic vintage lipstick and for a retro girl at heart – it’s absolutely wonderful!
The matte finish is long lasting and very pigmented so not a lot of product is needed to created your perfect pout. However, what harm can an extra layer do, right? After all, you can never have enough lipstick! Also, as red was the most popular shade in the vintage era, the majority of the lipsticks in the collection are different shades of, you guessed it -red! As a modern day vintage lover, Bésame is definitely the brand for me! Not to worry though, there are a few pink, plum and darker shades available – but ultimately not a huge variety of colours, apart from red. Therefore, if you’re after wild stand out neon shades, then these probably aren’t the lipsticks for you.
At £18 each, these lipsticks are in the mid to high end brand range, so if you’re not as passionate about vintage and makeup like I am, then you can probably live without buying one as there are lots of amazing red lipsticks for much more affordable prices. However, if you’re after a quality, long lasting, incredibly aesthetically pleasing lipstick – then Bésame is a must add to the collection! I look forward to trying all of their other products at some point and I must say, it’s so refreshing how quite a few brands are being inspired by the vintage look! Soap and Glory, Benefit, The Balm – I could go on! It just goes to show how timeless and iconic Classic Hollywood is and if it’s not broke – don’t fix it.
It’s hard to believe that on the night of August 4th, Marilyn passed away and would no longer bless us with her presence on Earth. It’s even more amazing that this didn’t happen last year, but fifty four years ago today. Marilyn was found on the early hours of the morning on August 5th and thus her death was announced as that day, however, rigor mortis had already set in which shows she actually passed sometime late the night before.
When I think about this day I’m filled with sadness, as the world didn’t just lose a huge star, more importantly, we lost a beautiful person which a kind soul and sensitive nature. I often wonder if Marilyn can see the world now and knows the huge legacy she has left over half a century on. Would she believe she was capable of this? Sadly I don’t think so, she never gave herself much credit for her special qualities. However, I’m sure she would be filled with happiness and feel loved, something she strove to find her whole life.
Although there is a huge amount of love for Marilyn, there are a lot of misconceptions and upsetting myths and lies that people have spread about her. You’ll probably notice that if a star dies young and tragically, millions of ridiculous theories with zero credit or substance start pouring out each year. Whilst making notoriety for themselves and lots of money, they neglect the one person that they’re making a profit from and not once do they think about the damage they are causing.
I can’t begin to tell you the amount of ignorance I’ve had to deal with regarding Marilyn over the years, some of it is curiosity, some just downright offensive and a lot can be pretty morbid. I shudder to think what Marilyn herself would feel if she knew about this but then I remember she had to deal with a lot of judgement and misconceptions during her life time. Even then she was ahead of her time and always handled things with maturity and grace;
“Those people that have been writing all those lies about me. All I know, it’s their problem. Those people, I don’t even know [them], or if we have met, it’s been brief. Can I take it? Are you kidding? I’m used to it, and remember the old saying: consider the source.” – Marilyn to photographer friend and author George Barris in the summer of 1962. [Marilyn: Her Life In Her Own Words, page 128.]
Of course, everyone is entitled to have their own opinion and feelings about someone, however, at least learn the actual truth and stop reading perpetual myths and lies as fact. I know it’s hard to believe but I do realize that Marilyn wasn’t actually perfect, but hating someone based on judgement and conspiracy is just plain ignorant and petty. At the end of the day I just remind myself it’s their loss, they’re the ones missing out on one very special lady.
I hope whatever you do today that you take a moment to think about this beautiful human being and hold a special thought for her. Marilyn may have not achieved her dream of having her own family, but she did achieve everlasting love and devotion from her millions of fans all around the world. She is instantly recognizable and ultimately immortal due to her iconic screen presence which is truly like no other.
When I think of Marilyn, a feeling of warmness and hope comes over me, to me this incredible lady was one of the strongest people who has ever lived. She suffered abuse, loneliness, isolation and through all of this worked extremely hard to achieve her dreams. Marilyn never stopped believing and always aimed to perfect her talents and improve herself, even when so many never saw her more than an image. It’s incredible to see how far she came in just thirty six years with such odds stacked against her.
I wonder if she ever thought someone was looking down on her, perhaps a Guardian Angel? I bet she never thought that so many, including myself, would one day see her as theirs.
I have just returned home from London after spending a wonderful three nights there to see the temporaryMarilyn Exhibitionheld at the Chelsea Design Centre. Marilyn Collector David Gainsborough Roberts has announced he will be selling his large collection of costumes and personal items atJulien’sin November. Before then, they will be displayed all over the world with London being the first stop until 20th June. Also being sold are personal items of owned by The Estate of Lee Strasberg, who Marilyn left 75% of her belongings to when she passed in 1962.
I’m very lucky to be able to say I’ve seen quite a lot of Marilyn’s items since I discovered her in October 2010. I previously saw a fair amount of David’s Marilyn Collection in March 2012 and as soon as I heard about him selling all of his items in November 2016 I knew I had to see them one more time, as well as Lee Strasberg’s which are also being sold. Marilyn fans are very fortunate that a lot of private collectors such as, Scott Fortner and Ted Stampfer kindly continue to share their Marilyn owned items with us. However, so many of her items get sold and tragically are never seen again which is incredibly upsetting as I always like to think if Marilyn belonged to anyone, it was to the public who loved her so much.
It was so lovely to see how beautifully displayed Marilyn’s items were at the Design Centre in Chelsea, as soon as myself and my mum arrived the staff asked if I was here for the Exhibition, I guess I don’t hide my excitement very well! As soon as you enter the building you are surrounded by beautiful portraits of Marilyn that are displayed from ceiling to floor. It gets even better when you walk through the doors and sense what’s to be seen in only a matter of seconds!
The first collection that you witness is Lee Strasberg’s Marilyn items, so everything from make up, jewelry, letters, shoes and sketches! I had not seen any of these personal belongings before and was truly amazed at what was just a few inches in front of me. Of course I am slightly biased, but everything really was truly stunning and ever so special. I think one of my favourite items would have to be Marilyn’s sketches, in particular one called, “Lover watching his lover sleep.” I instantly thought of Marilyn sleeping whilst Arthur gazed at his beautiful wife.
The collection of jewelry was effortlessly glamourous. Most Marilyn fans will know that Marilyn did not think Diamond’s were a girls best friend and was much more interested in books than the perfect ring. Therefore, because of this I think the items that were on display were extra special, as any items Marilyn owned must have had some special personal attachment or value. I absolutely adored the Revlon Lipstick, I think if I could own anything from that part of the collection this would be it. Of course, red lipstick is forever linked to Marilyn’s image, but I just loved the vintage display of it, so effortlessly glamourous. I actually tweeted Revlon telling them that they should re-release this shade to coincide with the auction and they liked my tweet so, I shall keep my fingers crossed!
For me, what I found most special in Lee Strasberg’s owned items were all of Marilyn’s personal letters and stationary. I recognized a lot of the writings as it is featured in the amazing book Fragments – a must for any Marilyn fan! Of course a lot of it was very sad to read as Marilyn suffered so much with her anxieties, but what warmed my heart were the beautiful inspiring sayings she would write to herself, “Dare not to worry” being a favourite.
Part of me feels reading the items is an invasion of Marilyn’s privacy and to an extent it is as I’m sure if Marilyn was still alive we probably wouldn’t be reading them. However, reading these items shows a lot of the true Marilyn which is sadly so often hidden by conspiracies and inaccuracies. These writings so a talented artist who forever wanted to learn and improve and a beautiful, vulnerable soul who ultimately just wanted to be happy. I’m sure after reading these a lot of people would have more respect and admiration for Marilyn and I’m sure that would mean a lot to the wonderful lady herself.
After experiencing this amazing collection I then walked through to the final part of the exhibit; Marilyn’s film costumes and clothes owned by David Gainsborough Roberts. The display lay out was absolutely stunning, all clothes where shown on a circular display with two levels, and four huge posters of Marilyn wearing the clothes hung at the top of the ceiling. Some of the costumes even had blu-ray footage of Marilyn wearing the clothes which was a wonderful addition.
It was fascinating to see the age range of people visiting the exhibition, it just further emphasizes the impact Marilyn has on everyone, she truly is loved by people of all ages. I think if I could choose one item from David’s collection to own it would have to be the Green Leotard Marilyn wears in Bus Stop (1956) to sing, “That Old Black Magic” I just adore it. Everyone who viewed the items kept saying how tiny Marilyn was, I still find it fascinating that people are shocked by this when her measurements were 35-22-35.
The exhibit was truly beautiful and a must see for any Marilyn fan or lover of Old Hollywood. The only thing that was sad to see was The Prince and The Showgirl dress was now displayed on a directors chair instead of a mannequin compared to the last time I saw it. I guess it’s become extremely fragile now, if only sixty years ago people realized how important these costumes would be! I also wished that all of the clothes had photos of Marilyn wearing them, I have seen her in all but three of the items so it shouldn’t have been to hard to find. One of my favourites, the costume Marilyn wears for, “There’s No Business Like Show Business” when she sings “After You Get What You Want, You Don’t Want it” was displayed on the upper level. I found this to be a shame as it would have been lovely to be able to have seen the dress with clips from the film of her wearing it like some of the other costumes.
I was fortunate to be able to visit the exhibition twice during my stay in London and when leaving for the final time I felt pretty sad that the majority of the items I will probably never be able to see again. However, I realize how fortunate I am to have had this opportunity and the memories will stay in my heart forever.
I also managed to visit theONGallerywhich is currently displaying the Happy Birthday Miss Monroe exhibit until 30th June. As soon as I walked a lovely staff member named Keith said I was looking very, “Marilynesque” which made my whole day! He realized I was a huge Marilyn fan and he was wonderful to talk to, loved photography and you could tell he appreciated Marilyn as an artist which was very refreshing. It was so wonderful to see photographs from all of Marilyn’s career, beginning in 1946 and ending in 1962.
While I was there I noticed two older men who had been fans since Marilyn was alive and they were very sweet. I was looking through a portfolio of vintage photos and noticed one of them was taking pictures of me! I looked up and he asked me if I was a Marilyn lookalike and I told him that was very sweet but no I wasn’t. He then said that I was absolutely gorgeous and he used to be a portrait photographer so wanted to take my picture. I almost teared up, I’ve rarely had such sweet things said to me face to face. I then heard them asking about a picture that I was looking at from 1952 and I helped identify the event for them, I don’t know why but they reminded me of my Grandad and it really was a lovely moment.
I continued to talk a lot with Keith, especially about the Frank Worth photos of Marilyn from 1953 and 1954 which are pretty rare. I told him how I had sent off for the free Marilyn print they offered in the Daily Express for Marilyn’s 90th Birthday and I mentioned an image Worth had taken of Marilyn and Sammy Davis Jr. which was pretty rare. Keith then told me that the image I was talking about was actually offered previously and he would give me a print, I couldn’t believe it!
I had such a wonderful time in London and truly recommend both exhibits to all Marilyn fans, actually, I recommend them to everyone! Admissions are free for both events and they are extremely special and simply a must see.
It’s hard to believe that today my favourite person, Marilyn Monroe, would be turning 90 years old, it even sounds absurd to say as she is forever etched in our minds as eternally young and beautiful. However, I wish she was here now to see how loved she is, even more so than the fifty fours years ago when she tragically left us.
For the past few years I have always made sure to write or blog about Marilyn on her Birthday and Death Anniversary, so if you’ve followed me for the last four years you’ll probably be pretty aware of that. Therefore, I’m not here to say anything new really, I’m just here to speak from my heart because as silly as it made sound to some people, that’s truly where Marilyn will always have a special place.
“Respect is one of life’s greatest treasures. I mean, what does it all add up to if you don’t have that? If there is only one thing in my life that I am proud of, it’s that I’ve never been a kept woman.” – Spoken to Photographer George Barris in July 1962.
Marilyn came into my life unexpectedly just before my 17th birthday in October 2010, when I picked up a Vanity Fair Issue with her on the front cover as their cover girl. As mentioned before, I’ve told the story numerous times of how I instantly felt connected to her and started my research and I’ve been collecting ever since.
I think I’ve always felt attached to the underdog, which ironically, many people probably don’t see Marilyn as. After all, she was viewed as beautiful and loved by all – America’s Sweetheart. However, when you actually take the time to learn about Marilyn, you realize she succeeded against extreme odds. She came from a broken home, was an illegitimate child to a mother who suffered with paranoid schizophrenia and after the first seven years of her life with the Bolender family, Marilyn was shifted around to various different guardians and even an orphanage. She suffered physical and emotional abuse, anxiety, depression and insomnia but never let any of this stand in the way of achieving her dreams.
“The time I sort of began to think I was famous, I was driving somebody to the airport, and as I came back there was this movie house and I saw my name in lights. I pulled the car up at a distance down the street; it was too much to take up close, you know, all of a sudden. And I said, “God, somebody’s made a mistake.” But there it was, in lights. And I sat there and said, “So that’s the way it looks,” and it was all very strange to me, and yet at the studio they had said, “Remember, you’re not a star.” Yet there it is up in lights. “
– Spoken to Richard Meryman for Life Magazine in July 1962.
I also owe Marilyn a lot of thank yous as since discovering her in October 2010 and setting up my blog,alwaysmarilynmonroeI have met so many incredible people and experienced so many wonderful memories. Not only did I find an inspiration for each day, I found a Guardian Angel, someone who would always be there in spirit and never judge or upset me. Someone who could cheer me up by just watching one of their films or seeing a photo and someone who went through so much but never gave up on herself even in her toughest times.
Sadly so many look at Marilyn as a victim, due to the endless conspiracies, (thanks Norman Mailer) and her young death which makes me really frustrated as in doing this they miss out on an incredible person. They view her as just a pretty face and a little dumb blonde when it reality this blonde was an avid reader, with a library of over 400 books ranging from Russian Literature to Psychology. They’ll call her a drug addict without having any compassion or understanding for her debilitating anxiety, depression and insomnia. They’ll hear about how hard she could be to work with or her lateness without knowing she suffered such extreme anxieties that she would often stay in her dressing room terrified to act a scene encase she messed up. Many even think she was playing herself on the screen and have little respect for her talent, thinking, “How can someone so beautiful be a good actress?” The irony being if they did some legitimate research they’d realize she was probably the greatest of them all as she’s fooled so many people for all of these years that she is the person they all perceive her as.
“What I really want to say: That what the world really needs is a real feeling of kinship. Everybody: stars, laborers, Negroes, Jews, Arabs. We are all brothers.”
– Spoken to Richard Meryman for Life Magazine in July 1962.
Another year has gone by and Marilyn’s star keeps growing brighter and brighter, people are still fascinated and enthralled by this beautiful soul. Did Marilyn have her faults? Of course she did, it’s hard to believe, I know, but she was a human being just like us. I love Marilyn for Marilyn and that will never change. I’d like to think that there are more genuine fans who love and respect Marilyn then conspiracy lovers who just follow their ignorance.
If I could hope of anything to come from this article it’s respect for Marilyn and maybe a little more compassion and understanding. She was a woman ahead of her time, a talented artist, a caring and sensitive soul but mostly importantly, she was a beautiful person.
“Fifty years on, we’re still watching her movies and talking about her. That’s not a dumb woman – trust me!” – Lauren Bacall to TCM in 2005.
As a true vintage girl at heart, I was absolutely thrilled when I heard aboutYours Magazinebringing out a specific retro style issue with all things Classic Hollywood and pre 2000s. Special thank you to Fraser from Immortal Marilyn andeverlasting-star.net forkindly sharing this! At £3.99 this isn’t the cheapest magazine but as far as I’m aware it’s the only one like it out there so personally, I’m happy to pay the price.
If you love Old Hollywood as much as I do then this is definitely the magazine for you, with my favourite Hitchcock Blonde, Grace Kelly featuring as Cover Girl. Not only is there a wonderful article on her inside, the magazine features many stories on stars such as, Ingrid Bergman, Katharine Hepburn and Spencer Tracy and Hedy Lamarr to name just a few.
I know reading the articles isn’t for everyone but, fear not, the magazine is full of photos and not just the ones you have seen so many times before. As someone who knows a fair amount about the Golden Age of Hollywood, I was pretty impressed with the magazines research, I even learned a few new things myself!
However, there were two noticeable mistakes that stuck out and did slightly frustrate me. Grace Kelly’s age when she died was listed as 53, when she was actually 52 and it was claimed Marilyn held her first ever press conference at The Savoy Hotel in July 1956 – the press conference of course happened, but it was mostly definitely not her first. Of course these pet peeves may be of little concern to a lot of readers, but as someone who is incredibly passionate about this subject, it is important for me to know that the writers are also just as informed.
Furthermore, although the majority of the magazines content is spot on with following the, “retro” content, I feel the magazine needs to be aware that it will not just attract an older audience. At 22 years old I am probably one of the younger readers, but I know I’m not the only modern girl with an old soul who loves learning about this subject. Not every single reader is buying this to, “reminisce” or feel, “nostalgic as the survey seems to imply.
What I really enjoyed about the magazine was the survey left for readers to give their opinions on the contents for research purposes. It’s very heartwarming to know that your views and interests are being considered and noted for future issues, you feel a part of the Yours Team’s aim and believe it is their aim to produce a quality product.
As someone who’s interests lie in the bygone era of Hollywood, it’s wonderful that such a unique magazine is so accessible and easy to find. If you’re not in the UK I think you can still purchase the magazine online, so fear not! I really hope it sticks to pre 1970s content, if I wanted to read about today I could easily just buy a modern day magazine .
If I could ask the magazine to stick to one thing it would be pre 1970s content, if I wanted to read about the stars of today, I could easily buy a modern day magazine. I really hope Yours Retro continues for many more issues to come, I for one will definitely be looking out for the next one!