One of our favorite actresses, like so many other people, is Audrey Hepburn.
In the 1953 classic “Roman Holiday“, Audrey portrays the bored and stifled Princess Ann- a princess whose day job of being a princess is exhausting and who runs away from her overly scheduled life to escape and be a “regular person” in Rome for a day. It is one of the absolute favorite movies of all-time for the editors here at What Would Kate Do- partially because of Audrey but also because of the subtle lessons the movie teaches on what we like to call “Princessing”.
We’re sure that some of the lessons from the movie are those that Kate has learned over her years being initiated into the Royal family, which we’re led to understand was a process carefully designed so she could handle the intense pressure of the scrutiny of being a Princess. This movie deals with the intense pressure and scrutiny members of the Royal family are under and and therefore, we believe, worthy of a note about what Kate could have learned from the fictional Princess Ann.
- A Princess must always play the part, even if she’s not interested in doing so. In the opening scenes of the movie, we see Princess Ann being featured in cities all across Europe to help “relations” between her country and others. We also see her bored with her scripted life as she loses her shoe at a formal dinner at her embassy and only seems to gather enthusiasm when trying to put said shoe back on. However, it’s never evidenced in her perfect demeanour as while she is trying to recover the shoe, she continues to greet dignitaries with a smile. This can be transferred into less regal life in such situations as when attending an event of someone you don’t particularly care for but looking like you’re having a wonderful time. Practice makes perfect, so take every opportunity you can to perfect your calm, cool and collected demeanour. We like to practice at such strenuous times as waiting in line for the slowest cashier on the face of the planet to process checkouts while toddlers are screaming all around you, while stuck in ridiculous amounts of traffic and when visiting in-laws.
- A Princess is incredibly well read and spoken. Within the first few minutes of meeting American journalist Joe Bradley, he recognizes that Princess Ann is obviously educated by the words she’s quoting (while high on sleeping pills nonetheless). Ladies, there is only one way to do this…
Read!I should correct that… Read the right things! Stop reading tabloid magazines about celebrity gossip and start to investigate classic works of literary genius. If you’re not a fan of reading, it’s a very relaxing and luxurious pursuit. It’s also one of the easiest (and cheapest) ways to improve on your Princess quotient – most old classic books are available to read for free as their copyrights have expired. Check out such classics as Jane Eyre or War and Peace.
- Part of being a Princess is definitely the work of all of the public appearances which are required… And of course always looking the part when you step out of your residence to avoid those pesky paparazzi! Rigid scheduling and responsibility is what pushes Princess Ann away, but there are some lessons that we can learn from this and work into our own lives- specifically how our own lives are often very regimented (Go to work at 9, drop off kids beforehand, pick up Grandma from doctor at 4pm) and how scheduling is not always the scary thing that Princess Ann makes it out to be. It’s often required to be able to handle all of our responsibilities. We like to use the Erin Condren life planners, which we think both Princess Ann and Kate would like as you can personalize them. For those uber-modern Princesses, the features of technology are quite handy with synchronizing your calendars and to-do lists.
- Lastly (albeit like the majority of Princess movies) Princess Ann is always well dressed and at rest is still one of those times, no? One of our favorite scenes in the movie is where Princess Ann asks Gregory Peck for a silk nightgown with roses while staying at his flat. We tend to think that all ladies should heed this information and take advantage of sleeping in only the most luxurious of garments… Are you not worth it? We think so!
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