Amy Winehouse 10th anniversary: Why the singer was a retro style icon

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Amy Winehouse embraced vintage style (Yui Mok/PA) (PA Archive)
Amy Winehouse embraced vintage style (Yui Mok/PA) (PA Archive)

A decade after the death of Amy Winehouse the singer – who died of alcohol poisoning aged 27 – is being honoured in a new BBC documentary.

Narrated by her mother Janis, Reclaiming Amy (set to air on BBC Two at 9pm on July 23) aims to portray a more “rounded image” of the star, whose struggles with alcohol and drug addiction have sometimes overshadowed her career success.

Not only was she a phenomenally talented singer and songwriter, Winehouse was admired for her retro-inspired personal style too.

She stuck to her signature look

(Yui Mok/PA) (PA Archive)
(Yui Mok/PA) (PA Archive)

On stage, Winehouse’s trademark look could be summed up as little dresses + big hair. Obsessed with 1950s rockabilly style, the London-born singer favoured form-fitting minidresses, often cinched at the waist with a wide belt.

(Lewis Whyld/PA) (PA Archive)
(Lewis Whyld/PA) (PA Archive)

She wore countless LBDs while performing, but every so often would switch it up with a fabulous sequinned, floral or brightly-coloured frock.

She mixed vintage and modern

(Anthony Devlin/PA) (PA Archive)
(Anthony Devlin/PA) (PA Archive)

Winehouse’s off-duty style was also heavily Fifties-inspired, but she brought the look up to date by teaming retro pieces, like her beloved Fred Perry polo shirts, with Noughties denim shorts, skinny jeans and ballet flats.

Killer red carpet style

(Yui Mok/PA) (PA Archive)
(Yui Mok/PA) (PA Archive)

While she was frequently snapped by the paparazzi looking less polished, when Winehouse dressed up for the high-profile events, she really shone.

(Ian West/PA) (PA Archive)
(Ian West/PA) (PA Archive)

Giving her signature look a glamorous makeover, she often chose Dolce & Gabbana minidresses, teamed with peep toe high heels and bold costume jewellery.

The beehive hair

(Yui Mok/PA) (PA Archive)
(Yui Mok/PA) (PA Archive)

All the greatest style icons have a trademark haircut and Winehouse was no exception – her gigantic, half up, half down beehive with flowing tendrils was her most recognisable feature.

(Anthony Devlin/PA) (PA Archive)
(Anthony Devlin/PA) (PA Archive)

The beehive had a wardrobe of its own, Winehouse accessorising it with scarves, rosettes, brooches and, for one Glastonbury appearance, a trio of cocktail umbrellas.

The epic eyeliner

(Anthony Devlin/PA) (PA Archive)
(Anthony Devlin/PA) (PA Archive)

Adopting a ‘more is more’ approach to beauty, Winehouse took the classic cat-eye liner look and turned it up to 11, with thick black wings that extended almost to her temples.

(Yui Mok/PA) (PA Archive)
(Yui Mok/PA) (PA Archive)

She kept the rest of my make-up simple, occasionally teaming her epic eyeliner with a bright red lip.

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