The Happy Birthday Dress Saga

Happy Birthday Dress

So… I’ve held my tongue on my site for a long time but I’m finally giving my view on the Happy Birthday Dress saga that is currently raging over a month after the initial incident.

For any of you out there who have possibly been living in outer Mongolia and haven’t heard about this, let’s go back to the beginning…

What is the Met Gala?

The Met Gala as it is currently known, is a yearly fundraising gala held in New York City. It is held to raise funds to benefit the Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute. The gala is organised by Vogue Magazine and is attended by celebrities from the world of fashion, entertainment and politics. Each year the gala has a theme, which the guests are expected to follow, though this is not enforced.

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The Marilyn Monroe Collection Interview – Part Two

In part two of my interview with Scott Fortner – owner of The Marilyn Monroe Collection – Scott talks more about his collection, bidding at auctions and how he became an integral part of the longest running Marilyn Monroe fanclub, Marilyn Remembered.

When was the first time you saw something of Marilyn’s in person and what was it?

Well that’s an interesting story.  The first time I even made a connection between Marilyn and her personal possessions was when I saw her trunk that was filled with her personal items in the Marilyn Monroe Encyclopedia by Adam Victor.  The trunk had been auctioned by Christie’s in 1995.  I just thought, “Man, that is so cool!”  And, quite luckily, that trunk and many of its contents, including Marilyn’s personal childhood Brownie camera, are part of my collection today. Continue reading “The Marilyn Monroe Collection Interview – Part Two”

The Marilyn Monroe Collection Interview – Part One

The Marilyn Monroe Collection

The Marilyn Monroe Collection is a collection of her belongings, owned by super-fan, Scott Fortner.  I love nothing more than when a genuine fan is able to buy something of Marilyns at auction – so you can understand how excited I am to share part one of my interview with Scott, which gives us insight into his love of Marilyn and how he has acquired one of,  if not, the world’s largest private collections of her belongings.

When did you become a Marilyn fan?

I don’t remember exactly when I became interested in Marilyn.  In junior high I saw Loni Anderson in “The Jayne Mansfield Story” and that’s really when I started to develop an interest in old Hollywood.  Very soon after that I discovered Marilyn and the rest is history. Continue reading “The Marilyn Monroe Collection Interview – Part One”

The Truth About Marilyn’s Dress Size

The Truth About Marilyn's Dress Size

In this article I am going to reveal the truth about Marilyn’s dress size.

There are many myths that surround Marilyn Monroe – mostly about her death – but one such myth I’d like to dispel is the controversy surrounding her true dress size.  People have argued about this over the years – most adamant that she was a size 16, plus-sized or, in some cases even obese and many articles have been written on the subject, some good, some bad – I’ve included a link to a very good one here.

A lot of people use Marilyn to hold her up as the example of a real woman, others to mock her as being “fat” or “very big”.  The truth of the matter is that Marilyn was a curvy woman but she was also very petite.  So let’s get to the bottom of this here: Continue reading “The Truth About Marilyn’s Dress Size”

Marilyn – Wedding Attire

Marilyn Monroe was married 3 times.  Her wedding attire each time was more different than the time before.  In this article I’m going to look at each outfit in more detail.

Wedding No. 1: Norma Jeane and James Dougherty – June 19, 1942

It’s widely believed that Norma Jeane’s Aunt Ana made this dress for her, though it has been said that it was borrowed too.  It may be that the dress was borrowed and Ana made alterations to it.  This dress was a typical 1940’s shape with slightly padded shoulders and narrow waist.  It was full-length, covered in lace with ruffles around the neckline and shoulders, and long sleeves.  She wore it with a 40’s style headpiece and a medium length veil.  This dress is the most traditional of Marilyn’s wedding dresses. Continue reading “Marilyn – Wedding Attire”

Happy Birthday Mr. President Dress

Happy Birthday Mr. President Dress

What is now known as the “Happy Birthday Mr. President Dress” has become one of, if not THE, most famous dress of all time.

In early 1962, having been asked to perform at a Democratic fundraiser & JFK’s 45th birthday celebration, Marilyn approached Hollywood designer Jean Louis to design a dress that “only Marilyn Monroe could wear.”

The colour of the nude souffle chiffon dress was said to match Marilyn’s skin tone and was embelleshed with 2,500 hand sown round crystals, strategically positioned so that her modesty was maintained. The dress was a column design with a scoop neck, sleeveless but with shoulder straps, and a zipper that went from the bottom of Marilyn’s rear to her lower back. The zipper was hidden by a hook and eye tab closure. The dress was so form fitting that Louis incorporated an 18 inch slit in the bottom so that Marilyn could walk in it. Continue reading “Happy Birthday Mr. President Dress”

Some Like It Hot – Black Dress

In 1958 Orry Kelly, an Australian fashion designer (1897 – 1964), was signed on as designer for the movie “Some Like It Hot”. Amongst his designs for the movie were a silver/white dress which, in his words, was “of nude souffle draped on the bias to lift her breasts and push her tummy in.  It was so slightly beaded over her breasts that her nipples were not covered and [director] Billy Wilder had to light her with a single spot that left the area strategically in darkness.”
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