Issue 9

article-img

Mia Farrow Debuts Her Pixie Cut in Rosemary’s Baby

Sometimes the expression “legend has it” turns out to be literally true, especially when it concerns one of the most memorable haircuts in Hollywood history. In 1968, Mia Farrow starred in the new film Rosemary’s Baby, in which her character surprises her husband with the new look and explains “It’s Vidal Sassoon. It’s very in.”

While filming, fashionable hairdresser Vidal Sassoon was flown to Los Angeles at the insistence of director Roman Polanski to give Farrow the iconic pixie cut. Off came the luxuriant blonde locks Farrow had sported in yesteryear’s Peyton Place television series. In came the ultrashort, “very in” pixie cut—a fashion sensation copied by women all over the world. What better way to publicize the movie than to invite photographers and reporters to record the stylist giving the actual haircut to the star? This would be the most photographed haircut in history.

There was only one problem with this story: Farrow later revealed that it never happened the way that it was publicized. In fact, it wasn’t Sassoon’s haircut to begin with. Farrow had largely created the style herself earlier that year—using manicure scissors no less—while still working on the TV drama. Sassoon was left to trim a mere half-inch and admitted that what should have cost $30 instead ended up costing $5,000. However, everyone remained on good terms. Farrow would write years later, “I intend no disrespect to Mr. Sassoon, but he had nothing to do with my haircut.”

Whatever the circumstances, it was Farrow who now owned the style. And thus a haircut that had been introduced in the 1930s by legendary performer Josephine Baker, popularized in the early 1950s by Audrey Hepburn in the film Roman Holiday, and later helped transform British model Lesley Hornby into a cultural icon named Twiggy, now became all the rage the world over. Not only that, this singular fashion moment helped launch a serious acting career and a movie that became a classic of psychological horror. Not bad for a haircut!

1938

The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Shoe designer Salvatore Ferragamo introduced The Rainbow, the first platform sole in the west in modern times. It was created especially for Judy Garland for the scene in which she sings her signature song “Over the Rainbow” in the film The Wizard of Oz.

The children’s book Mr. Popper’s Penguins by Richard and Florence Atwater was published. It tells the story of Mr. Popper, a modest house painter, and his family who live in Stillwater, Minnesota and take in a growing number of pet penguins.

1948

Claire McCardell, whose key role in designing clothing for women during World War II and beyond made her one of the most influential fashion designers, won the prestigious Neiman Marcus Award for Distinguished Service in the Field of Fashion.

The Marshall Plan, an American initiative to rebuild Western European economies devastated as a result of World War II, went into effect.

1958

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer/Getty Images

The movie Gigi, the last of the great MGM musicals, premiered in New York City and went on to win nine Academy Awards, including Best Picture.

Hera Vintage Ads/Alamy Stock Photo

Cosmetics queen Helena Rubinstein made headlines by inventing the first ever automatic mascara in a tube, Mascara-Matic (eventually renamed Long Lash). This rechargeable object was nestled within a sophisticated golden tube.

1968

AP Photo/Dick Strobel

Senator Robert F. Kennedy was assassinated at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles after making a victory speech thanking his supporters for his win in the California presidential primary.

Keith Homan/Alamy Stock Photo

Wisk launched its wildly successful “Ring Around The Collar” ad campaign in print and on television.

1978

Albert Watson/Condé Nast via Getty Images

Perry Ellis introduced his own line of sportswear with a signature style featuring loose tailoring, long lines, and oversized tops and sweaters.

©Paws. All Rights Reserved

Jim Davis’s Garfield comic strip, which featured the lasagna-loving cat, was first run in 41 newspapers.

1988

AP Photo/Barry Thumma

U.S. Surgeon General C. Everett Koop issued a report stating that the addictive properties of nicotine are similar to those of heroin and cocaine.

AP Photo/Mark Lennihan

Fashion designer Stephen Sprouse, famous for creating playful and dashing clothing that featured neon sequins and DayGlo colors, lost financial backing for the second time in his career and called it quits for good.

1998

Joseph Del Valle/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

The final episode of Seinfeld aired on NBC. The size of its audience allowed the network to charge advertisers $2 million for a 30-second spot.

AP Photo/Michael S. Green

A strike that began at one General Motors parts factory in Flint, Michigan, quickly spread to five other plants and lasted seven weeks.

2008

AP Photo/Richard Drew

Bill Gates stepped down as chairman of Microsoft to work full-time running the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

©New Line Cinema/Courtesy Everett Collection

Sex and the City: The Movie< premiered as a feature film and a sequel of sorts to the HBO comedy series of the same name.