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1950s Vintage Fashion Icon Grace Kelly

Updated on March 10, 2013

Grace Kelly Bio

Grace Kelly was a beautiful girl raised in a wealthy Catholic Irish-American family in Philadelphia. She attended good schools in her hometown, before going to New york to study at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts.

Determined to prove that she could earn her own way, she began modeling and doing television commercials on the side. This led to small acting roles and and a serious interest in theater.

After appearing in a few plays on Broadway, she was invited to Hollywood where she quickly became a famous film star, appearing in eleven movies and winning an Oscar as Best Actress for the Country Girl in 1954, which co starred William Holden. Grace Kelly's life was like a whirlwind dream. Everything she did seemed to be an instant success.

While attending the Cannes Film Festival in 1955, she met Prince Rainier III of Monaco at a reception given at his palace. A year later, she left Hollywood to become Princess Grace of Monaco in a spectacular marriage ceremony held in the principality.

She resided in the splendid palace overlooking the bay with her Prince Charming and their three lovely children, Caroline, Albert and Stephanie... But the fairly tale does not have the traditional happy ending. While driving along the winding high roads along the Riviera, with her daughter Stephanie, she suffered a stroke. The car plunged off the road and Princess Grace was killed. The world was shocked, and a huge memorial service was held for her in Monaco.

At first, Grace Kelly seemed no more than another extra girl, thought undeniably pretty and blonde in her earliest movies, Fourteen Hours and High Noon, both in 1951. Her elegant beauty became more evident in the remake of a Jean Harlow movie, Mogambo in 1953, although she paled beside Ava Gardner as the rival for Clark Gable's affections. However, during the shooting, she became intimate with Gable and they might have married had Grace not felt that the 27 year age difference was too great.

It was in three Alfred Hitchcock pictures that her sex appeal was best revealed. She was Hitchcock's ideal "cool blonde", to be terrorized. She proved an unwilling victim of Ray Milland's murder in 1954 with Dial M for Murder. She was James Stewart's society girlfriend in Rear Window and was prey for a jewel thief in To Catch a Thief.

In vivid contrast to these spoiled sophisticates, Grace's role as the bitter, dowdy wife of an alcoholic singer (Bing Crosby) in The country Girl, was an attempt to prove she could be more than just glamorous. It is a good, perceptive performance, but many felt she received the Best Actress award for having the courage not to wear much make-up or elegant clothes.

Having made her point,she quickly returned to undemanding decorative parts in Green Fire and The Bridges At Toko-Ri. Both in 1955.


Grace Kelly in Beautiful Blue Gown to set off her Blonde Hair

Her last two films were tailor-made for her. The Swan and High society (1956) in which she was paired again with Bing Crosby. Again Grace though that the age gap would be an obstacle.

Despite a great many offers to return to the screen, Grace Kelly always refused. Although two years before her death she was preparing a comeback. Grace was not happy at home due to her husband's infidelities. Grace was in her 50s and in an emotionally desperate state of wanting to find her self again. She had hopes of continuing her career when she had left off thirty years earlier.

She carried out the duties required of her, gave prizes at the Monte Carlo Rally, and performed charity readings of poetry around the world . She was a diligent mother, and spent some time in Paris when her daughter Caroline was studying there. On or off screen, she continued to play the role of a star.


Princess Grace with costar William Holden, accepting her Oscar for Best actress in The Country girl. One year later she would retire from movies to become the Princess of Monaco.

grace kelly wedding gown

Grace Kelly's wedding gown is still being copied for its extravagance of detail and simplicity of style. It is the perfect shape as far as figure flattering wedding gowns go. It is also modest and elegant enough for a royal wedding.

The train is full and balanced well to the overall shape of the skirt. Unlike the notorious Princess Diana wedding dress of the 1980s.

Grace Kelly Wedding

In a solemn and traditional wedding ceremony Grace Kelly sits with Prince Rainier while the Bishop of Monte Carlo gives nuptial benediction. Rainier designed his own Napoleonic military uniform.

Movie star Grace Kelly was now Princess Grace.


There was a civil ceremony on April 18th 1956, and a Catholic Mass on the 19th. It was called The Wedding of the Century and is considered to be one of the most elaborate and beautiful weddings ever.

Beautiful photo of the wedding party.

The young flower girls carried bouquets of pink miniature roses and wore pale yellow gowns. The more mature ladies of the wedding party wore a darker shade of yellow.

Grace & Family

During the 1970s Princess Caroline and Princess Stephanie were tabloid favorites. Every move they made made National Enquirer news.

Grace Kelly's Granddaughter

Charlotte Casiraghi
Charlotte Casiraghi

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    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 

      6 years ago

      I remember how much my sisters admired Grace Kelly. She had a charm and beauty that was so beautifully expressed by her style of clothing. She was a fashion icon in her day. Enjoyed the background.

    • carol7777 profile image

      carol stanley 

      6 years ago from Arizona

      She was so gorgeous and probably taken up by becoming a princess. However life is full of realities andI am sure her fairy princess life took a turn for the worse. We all make decisions in life and it takes us right or left. However she is legendary with her great beauty and talent as an actress...Great hub and voted up++++

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