Monday, May 2, 2011

Someone had to do it!

I just can’t get enough of Helena Rubinstein! Here was a woman who was only 4’10 tall so she had to create an impact, and not only through being one of the world’s richest women. Madame’s business was to make women beautiful, despite her own lack of the attribute and make them beautiful she did.

She entertained lavishly whether it be in her penthouse in New York overlooking Central Park or in her apartment in Paris. Even when entertaining or being entertained she became somewhat notorious for apocryphal quips. On one occasion when a rather inebriated French ambassador expressed vitriol towards Edith Sitwell and her brother Sacheverell: “Vos ancêtres ont brûlé Jeanne d’Arc!” “What did he say?," Madame, who knew little French, asked a guest. “He said, ‘Your ancestors burned Joan of Arc” Madame quickly replied, "Well, someone had to do it."

Madame entertaining in her New York apartment with Guy Laroche kissing her hand.

You have to admit, she had savoir faire, even though it might have annoyed some!


  1. Lovely post haha I cracked at the Joan of arc comment...You saw the shirt blue? Its actually light green with really really thin sky blue stripes...but they didn´t appear in the pic

    The Black Label

  2. me ha encantado tu blog, es magnifico no lo conocia, pasate por el mio si quieres

  3. She sounds like quite the little spitfire. I once read a book about her for a class I was taking (can't remember why) but don't remember that she was so tiny!! What a legacy she left behind!

  4. I agree, we can never have too much Helena Rubinstein. She is a wonderful example of being chic, stylish, compelling, memorable, and elegant, without being physically beautiful. And didn't she have the most amazing talent for seeing creativity in others? I like the wonderful portraits that she had painted of herself.

  5. Mr SWF, As you say she was the epitome of all these things without filling the stereotype mold of what people think these things should be. The portraits are wonderful.

    Lenore, tiny tiny tiny. What she did not have in height she made up for in personality.

    Enchanted Home, You summed it up perfectly! A little Spitfire. If you get the cahnce read "War Paint" a biography of her and Elizabeth Arden.

    La Infinita, many thanks for your comment and visit!

    Andy, I think it is one of the best ever!


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