When Agnès Varda arrived at the Oscars last year wearing a full Gucci silk pajama set, she proved that the much-hyped Italian brand isn’t just for millennials. In fact, given her bold, gleefully eccentric style, she could’ve been its ambassador.
The feminist French director, who was 89 at the time, wore the Gucci look with a level of swagger and confidence that her younger peers could only aspire to, landing her a place at the top of our best-dressed list — and in our hearts.
Varda, who has been working in film since the 1950s, died on Thursday as the result of complications from cancer. She was 90. Her last film, Faces Places, was a documentary that she directed with the French photographer JR. It was nominated for Best Documentary Feature at the 2018 Oscars, making Varda the oldest person to be nominated for a non-honorary Academy Award. She was also the first female director to be awarded an honorary Oscar and an honorary Palme d’Or.
The world knows Varda for directing films like Cleo From 5 to 7, Le Bonheur, and The Creatures. But her style is worthy of celebration, too. It was an extension of her radical personality, boundless creativity, and joie de vivre.
When Varda wasn’t wearing Gucci pajamas, she loved a good print and a strong color, particularly purple, and would oftentimes combine the two.
She wore her hair in a dark purple bowl-cut with a silver crown. For accessories, she preferred round, tinted sunglasses and sneakers.
She also loved colorful scarves and statement necklaces, which she also liked to wear together.
Varda always looked comfortable but never sloppy. At the Indie Spirit awards, for example, the internet took notice of her incredible purple tracksuit, which gave Armie Hammer a run for his money. It had bedazzled piping which matched her silver shoes.
Varda had no shame about repeating outfits — she seemed more interested in showing off her handbags and scarves, which she would often hold over her head or out in front of her. She knew how to move in her clothes and bring her accessories to life. Her red-carpet poses were part shrug, part bow, and part jazz hands.
Style icons like Tilda Swinton actually did bow in Varda’s presence.
And even when Varda was not physically present on the red carpet, she could still be one of the best-dressed attendees at any event. Her partner-in-crime, JR, was known to tote a life-size cardboard cutout of her as his date.
Varda, you will be missed.