At age 18 Simone Micheline Bodin (Bettina) left her home in Normandy to arrive in Paris were she lived with a family and looked after their children. She managed to secure an interview with Jacques Costet a young couturier who had recently opened his showrooms. That interview was to change her life. The young Simone was interested in a career in fashion design but Costet surprised her by saying, Come back this afternoon. You will start as a model! That as they say was only the beginning.
Paris was the ideal backdrop for fashion photographs!
Hats "top off" any ensemble!
Portraits by Irving Penn, Paris 1950
In her little rented studio on the Avenue Montaigne in Paris, Life Magazine interviews and photographs Bettina for a feature article. She is shown with her cat Agathe.
The Red Shoes dress by Jacques Fath (1950). After this photo session by Irving Penn, large theatrical stoles were often used. Published in American Vogue.
Photo by Jean Chevalier as seen by Elle readers shows Bettina wearing a shirt from Hubert de Givenchy's first collection in 1952. The blouse was known as the Bettina Blouse and she and it became a phenom. Bettina was shown wearing it in every magazine by all the leading photographers.
Jacques Fath, Spring 1951
Photo taken at a shoot organized by German Vogue 1996
Perhaps it was her fresh freckled face, her round cheeks and red hair, her natural poise, unaffected manner and refreshing inexperience that combined to make Bettina (so nicknamed by Jacques Fath) a household name and the most famous French model of the 1950s.
Thanks again Fifi for a fun Fifi’s Fashionable Friday .
Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend and of course be sure to make it tres fashionable!