We’re marking 50 years since Marilyn Monroe’s untimely death on the 5th August 1962. Her successes still shine to this day, as we celebrate the unforgettable star. One of the most desirable women ever known – a blonde bombshell, with ruby red lips and stunning curves.
The Marilyn we know and love was born Norma Jean Baker on June 1st 1926 in Los Angeles. She grew up in orphanages and foster homes, fatherless, with a mother who had been institutionalised. She rose to fame at age 16 as a stunning pin-up model, with her classic womanly figure and irresistable sensuality sashaying into over 30 films. These include cult classics and big screen hits including Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, Some Like it Hot, and of course the The Seven Year Itch with its iconic promo shoot.
Monroe battled her way through many difficulties, reputably mental illness, tragic relationships and abuse. But her fame only appeared to be on the rise before she was found dead at her home, aged only 36. At the time the cause of death was called to be probable suicide through drug overdose; but this verdict has since been shrouded in doubt.
Conspiracy theories rage, with various scandals opening the gateway for a murder mystery. The question is posed – could the overdose have been accidental? Unlikely; as someone who regularly took the prescription drugs would have known their limits. Recently a cheque for furniture was found, signed by Monroe the day before her death, raising the speculations about her suicide yet again. A life filled with so much chaos and extravagance was sure to leave us in style, as we still ponder over the tantalizing mystery of her death today.
Monroe has remained a style icon and renowned name, one of the most written about women in history. Her fans soak up any new insight, in an attempt to shed some light onto the life of this ever shining starlett.
Last year we were graced with the award winning success My Week with Marilyn, where actress Michelle Williams embodied our classic beauty. There was also a TV series Smash, portraying the development of a Monroe musical, and a stage production called Forever Blonde celebrating her life.
Monroe was also celebrated at the Cannes Film Festival this year, as the poster girl for the event. She was shown photographed on her 30th birthday, her lips shaped in a kiss as she blows out a lone candle. The festival organisers explained the moving tribute as a “Coming together symbolising the idea of simplicity and elegance.”
There is a vast collection of Monroe memorabilia, with her gorgeous form adorning anything from clothing, jewellery and art work. Her timeless style is an ongoing inspiration in the world of fashion. The Monroe collection continues as MAC cosmetics have announced a new range, to be released in October.
So why the fascination with Marilyn? She embodies a timeless magic, an image we can relate to and aspire to. There are two sides to the Monroe coin, on one she is an empowered sex symbol, on the other left vulnerable and insecure. While her life and death are shrouded in mystery and intrigue, one thing is for sure; we won’t be forgetting her anytime soon.
As the world of models and actresses swirl around us in an eddy of everchanging styles, there is one thing that stands the test of time; Marilyn Monroe. I don’t think she will ever go out of fashion, as her legend lives on as strong as ever.