During JFK’s presidency in the 1960s, Jacqueline Kennedy quickly became a style icon, and it was during this time that French-born designer Oleg Cassini was hired to create her original wardrobe. From 1961 to late 1963, Cassini dressed Jackie in many of her signature looks, including wardrobe staples like A-line dresses, pillbox hats, trapeze coats, elegant jewelry, evening gowns, and of course her infamous colorful suits.
One of the reasons Jackie Kennedy’s style struck a chord with so many American women is that the looks were easy to copy and something nearly anyone could pull off. Unlike the fashions of the 1950s that included large circle skirts, tight waists, and petticoats with yards of expensive fabric, the First Lady’s A-line dresses and pillbox hats were something everyday women could emulate–and her style seemed new and fresh in comparison. Rather than opting for over-the-top intricate designs, Kennedy’s look was minimal, modern, and understated–the casually glamorous girl next door.
Jackie Kennedy gained the favor of the American people not only for her elegant style, but also for her tact and social grace. One way this was evident was in how she chose to dress on international trips. While visiting foreign countries, Jackie always dressed according to the cultures and customs of the country she’d be in. By showing respect for other nations and cultures, Kennedy fostered her own sense of style and gained admiration from all over the world.
A prime example of this was on a trip to India in 1962, throughout which Kennedy showed off a more conservative style than what she would normally wear in the United States. One of the most iconic looks from the trip was a peach A-line Oleg Cassini dress with a bow in the front:
This famous dress was widely photographed and featured in Life magazine. It is currently on display at the John F. Kennedy Library and Museum:
It’s always interesting to see how a style from decades ago can withstand the test of time, and Jackie Kennedy’s peach bow dress is no exception. The classic A-line cut, bold peach color, and bow are just as pretty today as they were 50 years ago.
If you’re a fan of this classic style and want to recreate the look, Lily Boutique has a similar style called the Lauren Bow Front A-Line Dress:
This dress retails for just $40 at Lily Boutique and features a V neckline and princess seams at the bust. The attached skirt has an A-line cut with subtle pleating–and the bow in the center of the waist adds a playful touch reminiscent of Jackie Kennedy. This dress would look nice paired with wedges or nude pumps– or go full out Jackie-style and wear it with ivory pumps, pearls, and gloves. However you choose to wear it, we think Jackie O would certainly have approved!