Jackie Kennedy’s Enduring Legacy: Fashion, History, and Philanthropy
By: Beverly Abellanosa
When one hears the name Jackie Kennedy, an image of a pink Chanel suit paired with a matching pillbox hat immediately enters the mind. The former First Lady has left a lasting impact on society and the fashion community that can be traced from her husband’s presidency to recent fashion week runways, where the likes of Jeremy Scott have created collections inspired by the former First Lady.
Jacqueline O’Nassis Kennedy was one of the most iconic figures of the 20th century. Her impact on fashion, history, popular culture, and society is still felt today. In this article, we will explore the enduring legacy of Jackie Kennedy.
Jackie Kennedy’s Impact on Fashion
Jackie Kennedy is widely regarded as one of the most stylish women of the 20th century and one of the most influential First Ladies. Her fashion choices were both elegant and timeless, and they continue to inspire designers and fashionistas today.
Jackie Kennedy’s signature look
Jackie became a global fashion icon during her husband’s presidency. After the 1960 election, she commissioned family friend Oleg Cassini, a French-born American fashion designer, to construct an entire original wardrobe for her tenure as First Lady.
It was at this time that the “Jackie” look was established. Jackie was known for her love of classic, tailored pieces, such as shift dresses, A-line skirts, and pillbox hats. She was also famous for her love of bright colors and bold patterns, which she often wore with understated accessories like low-heel pumps, pillbox hats, and gloves.
Jackie Kennedy’s enduring fashion legacy
In 1965, Kennedy Onassis was named to the International Best Dressed Hall of Fame. 47 years later, Time magazine listed Kennedy Onassis on its list of “All-Time 100 Fashion Icons” and in 2016, Forbes included her on the list of 10 Fashion Icons and the Trends They Made Famous.
Perhaps Jackie’s most iconic fashion moment was her pink Chanel suit, which she wore on the day her husband, President John F. Kennedy, was assassinated. The suit, which was custom-made for Jackie, has become a symbol of her grace and resilience in the face of tragedy.
Jackie Kennedy’s style changed after her tenure as First Lady
After her tenure as First Lady, Kennedy Onassis underwent a change in her style. She ditched the clean-cut suits and pillbox hats of the ’60s for a more relaxed, ’70s style that consisted of wide-leg pantsuits, large lapel jackets, silk headscarves, and large oversized sunglasses. She later went on to set a new trend of wearing white jeans white a black turtleneck pulled over the hips instead of tucked in.
Jackie Kennedy’s Impact on History and Philanthropy
Jackie Kennedy was not just a fashion icon, but also a key figure in American political history. As the First Lady of the United States, she played an active role in shaping the image of the Kennedy administration. She was a strong advocate for the arts and humanities, and she helped establish the White House Historical Association, which is still active today.
Following her husband’s assassination, Jackie worked tirelessly to preserve his legacy. She oversaw the creation of the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, and she played a key role in the design of the eternal flame that marks his grave at Arlington National Cemetery.
Jackie Kennedy was also a committed philanthropist, and she used her position of influence to advocate for causes she believed in. She was a champion of the arts and education, and she helped establish the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.
Jackie also supported numerous charities and social causes, including the Red Cross, the March of Dimes, and the American Cancer Society. Her tireless work on behalf of these organizations helped to raise awareness and funds for important causes.
Jackie Kennedy’s Impact on Popular Culture
Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis continues to live on not only in fashion but through popular culture as well. Throughout the years, Kennedy Onassis and the Kennedy family have continued to dominate American culture through documentaries, mini-series, and movies. In 2016, Natalie Portman portrayed Kennedy Onassis in the film Jackie, which was set during the JFK presidency and the aftermath of his assassination.
In the years since her death, Jackie has continued to be a subject of fascination for writers, filmmakers, and historians. Numerous books, movies, and TV shows have been made about her life, and her image has been used in countless advertisements and fashion campaigns.
The enduring legacy of Jacqueline O’Nassis Kennedy
Although Jackie Kennedy is most known for her iconic fashion, she also contributed greatly to the expansion of arts in the United States. Several wards, buildings, and monuments have been dedicated to her in honor of her lasting humanitarian efforts, and the enduring legacy of Jacqueline O’Nassis Kennedy can be felt in many aspects of modern society.
Her impact on fashion, history, philanthropy, and popular culture has been profound, and her grace and elegance continue to inspire people around the world. Her legacy is a testament to the power of style and grace, serving as a reminder of the role that individuals can play in shaping the course of history.
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