The Rich Life On a Budget

What Would "She" Do?

While I am content with the woman I am, I do endeavor to be a better woman: more confident, more graceful, more cultured, more stylish, sophisticated and chic and more wise.

Like many other women (and bloggers) striving to improve themselves, I like to have a specific person to look to; to emulate. A woman I can visualize and ask myself, “What would ‘she’ do in this situation?” Finding that “she” who inspires me has been more difficult than I thought.

At first, “she” was an ambiguous chic woman who exists or existed in real life. I tried Audrey Hepburn. But I’m 6’2″ with a curvy figure. And although I adore Audrey, I can’t personally relate to her image.

Then I tried Jackie Onassis. I admire her as an American icon and as one of our nation’s most elegant and stylish women of all time, but again, I can’t relate to her. She’s out of my realm: First Lady to our most beloved President, grew up privileged, and married a billionaire.

Next, another Audrey – Audrey Tatou. Gorgeous, French, loved her in Coco Before Chanel and Amèlie. But still just not the right “she”. Too young, maybe? Too pert?

I used to think about Angelina Jolie as a possibility. I think she’s one of the top five most beautiful women in the world. And she has done incredibly unselfish humanitarian deeds. Angelina seems to ignore what the gossip rags say about her and doesn’t get sucked in to the whole Hollywood starlet role as much as her famous counterparts.

But I have a problem with her. She has a past that I have a hard time overlooking.

I found my “she” while searching for photos for yesterday’s post. I wanted a photo of a striking woman to make the point that it is tasteful to admire and appreciate beautiful, stylish women.

The first woman who came to mind was Monica Bellucci.

She starred in an Oscar nominated movie from 2000 called Malèna that I watched a few months ago. It was the first time I had seen Monica in a film.

It’s a lovely Italian movie; a feast for the eyes. Bellucci is gorgeous and sexy throughout, wearing many fantastic outfits. And it was filmed in Sicily with breathtaking scenery.

I don’t know much about Monica. Just this:

She’s almost 46.
Recently had her second child.
She is Italian (from Umbria).
She speaks French, English, some Spanish and of course, Italian.
She went to law school but dropped out to pursue a career in modeling and acting.
She married her second husband (French actor, Vincent Cassel) in 1999.

That is all I want to know for now. I am happy with the image of her that I have created for myself as a guide to being the woman I want to be.

Here are some pictures of Monica, looking très chic. There are more sexy photos of her online than anything else, she is an international sex symbol after all, but I prefer the more conservative pictures.

Love the eyeliner
Simple and striking

And if you were wondering how much of her beauty is smoke and mirrors (makeup and Photoshop), here’s Monica on the cover of French Elle with no smoke and no mirrors (“sans fards” – love that term).

Lastly, here is Monica in a recent photo. She is aging beautifully, yes?

Monica may or may not be confident, graceful, cultured, sophisticated, wise, stylish and chic. But I perceive her to be all of those things. That is what having a “she” is all about.

From now on, when confronted with a decision of whether or not to eat a hastily made sandwich standing over the sink, watch a brain cell dissolving television program, spread gossip about someone else, or spend money on a trendy outfit because it’s what everyone is wearing, I will stop and ask myself:

“What would Monica do?”

Who is your “she” and why?

25 thoughts on “What Would "She" Do?

  1. Fiona

    Adrienne, I love that you have put careful thought into your ‘she’. I’m like you, style icons that don’t have a figure, or colouring like mine are hard to relate to. I don’t have any one person so it could be a fun google image search to see about changing that. I think Monica Bellucci is such a great one for you and the pictures you have chosen are beautiful.

  2. life, in small chunks

    Oh Adrienne, you picked a good one. She is a beautiful woman, in a very honest way, or so it seems. You’ve posed a good question. I’ve often thought that Katherine Hepburn was all those things you mentioned, to me. I haven’t thought of a more contemporary woman, but I’ll be thinking about it now! karin

  3. Stephanie

    She is drop dead gorgeous and so feminine. Look her up on you tube. There’s a fabulous old commercial for a D&G perfume, Sicily that she is in and there are other for Dior that she’s done. She’s stunning. Great choice!

  4. Cherie

    She is beautiful and seems so at ease with herself. She appears to be a great icon for you as you have similar coloring, etc. (I’ve never heard of her before but just added Malèna to my Neflix list.) I’m in the process of seeking my own style icon. Like Fiona said, it’s easier to relate to someone with similar attributes.

  5. Clare

    I love this. I also love seeing celebs and everyone else sans fards! Now you know me, Adrienne-who do you think my “she” should be? Drew Barrymore? (Love, but a little hippyish for my personal style)Kelly Ripa?(If only, and I love that she has a committed marriage and loves it.) I’ve always loved Marilyn, but don’t have quite the blonde, boobs, and drugs to pull that one off. Possibly Alicia Silverstone? Love her stance on animals and health-but she is generally sans fards and I really do love un petite fard, ya know?Any ideas of a “she” for me?

  6. Anonymous

    Monica Belluci crossed my radar in the Matrix series – she’s gorgeous and seems to be aging naturally, which shows integrity. I like Juliette Binoche, another natural, mature beauty. She also has brains and artistry. – Queen Lucia

  7. Adrienne


    I like someone who is in my same age group as well as similar coloring, height, body shape, etc. I like to see how my “she” handles aging.
    I look forward to hearing who you might choose!


    Katherine Hepburn is another great style icon. It’s too bad that modern day chic women aren’t popping into our heads right and left. Where have they gone? Please let me know if you think of anyone close to KH’s style, or just someone you identify with. It’s so interesting to me!


    Thank you – I will check her out on youtube!

  8. Adrienne


    Malena is an interesting and entertaining movie. I can see why it got lots of international attention and an Oscar nomination. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.
    If you find your “she”, please let me know who it is!


    Don’t tell me that you haven’t heard you resemble Audrey Hepburn. You have such big, pretty eyes and high cheekbones. Plus your delicate frame and thin figure…to me it’s a no-brainer! Cut your bangs short, put on a cute black fitted dress, kitten heels and tiara – then look in the mirror. Audrey! (I just gave you a great Halloween idea).

    Queen Lucia,

    Yes! Juliette Binoche. I like that she has chosen to age naturally unlike her French acting counterparts Isabelle Adjani (who used to look very much like Monica) and Emmanuelle Beart.

  9. Anonymous

    Monica was in the action movie Shoot’Em Up. The movie is fun and silly which she plays a hooker.( I liked it)anyways.. when I finished it, I had to look her up on IMDb. Monica is gorgeous and I love her voice. Excellent choice.


  10. BODECI body


    I am of the blessed few who know you up front and personal. I love your choice, Malena is so ‘bodeci’.

    One adjective you didn’t mention (and I know this is about style) is ‘generous of heart’. I think of those women you mentioned, and yes, while they are all gorgeous and look great, on the other side of the lens, they did their good thing for the press it received.

    YOU, my dear, are one of very few, whom I rank up there in style, grace and true character.

    Beautiful to the core.

  11. Adrienne


    Thank you for commenting. I appreciate it!

    After I finished my post, I went to Netflix and noticed Shoot ’em up. I’ll put it in my queue since you recommended it. I would like to see her in another role other than Malena. She didn’t talk much in that movie and I can’t recall her voice.

    I also saw a recent film she starred in where she plays a prostitute (I see a trend) with Gerard Depardieu – I also want to see that.

    Belle de Ville,

    Yes, she is a modern day Sophia Loren – curvy, smoldering and smart with timeless style and beauty.


    Thank you for your sweet comment. You are a true friend.

    And yes, ‘generous of heart’ did play a part in my decision. That’s why I like Angelina Jolie because she genuinely cares about other people.
    I’m not sure about Monica and her generous heart, but I choose to believe that besides believing that she is the most gorgeous, chic and smart woman in the world, I believe she is also a good person. I’m not going to Google her anymore because I’m afraid of ruining my vision and having to find a new “she”!




    I can’t personally think of a particular “she” off the top of my head, but I have known a few (older) women in my life who I admired and hoped I could age as gracefully and beautifully as them. (one was my mom)

    I think I have seen pictures of Monica before, but have not seen any of her movies. She is pretty darn gorgeous! I think it’s always good to have something to strive for isn’t it?


  13. Sara Louise

    Monica is a perfect choice for you! Her hair, and stature fit you perfectly.
    And my husband thinks she is the most beautiful woman in the world (he worships at the alter of Monica!)
    I’m not sure who my ‘she’ is, but I like the idea of finding her. I’ll let you know when I do 🙂

  14. Faux Fuchsia

    I love Monica. Did she really have a baby in her mid 40s? She’s had a bit of plastic surgery. I think she is very very beautiful.

    I don’t have a go to person who I wonder what “she” would do. Maybe I need one.

  15. what's her bucket

    I have always loved and admired Charlize Theron. She is 8 years younger than I am and we do not share the same body type as I am more curvy in the hips and thighs than she is, but she is tall 5’11” and blonde. I think she is elegant, understated and talented. She grew up in South Africa, maybe that is why she seems to have an elegance not usually found in American women. I have always loved Grace Kelly too. She was one of the most beautiful women in the world. I like how she gave up Hollywood to marry her prince charming and start a family. I like your style icon too, she is beautiful.

  16. edk.dolce

    Monica is gorgeous!

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  17. Nikosmommy

    Ahhh Monica Bellucci is gorgeous! (I honestly didn`t know who she was, but my Hubs LOVES her, and he first introduced me to who she was and he has followed her for years.) He thinks that she is the epitome of stylish euro beauty!
    What a great lady to identify with!

  18. Beth Hazelton

    Beautiful “she” you have chosen. I actually have two “she’s”…Audrey Hepburn for her beauty, style, grace, style, philanthropy, and concern for family and the world at large. My second she is Gabrielle Coco Chanel, because she was fearless. I have not found anyone today who can come close to either woman. While I love Audrey Tatou’s and Juliette Binoche’s styles, I don’t know enough about them off-screen to make them my “she’s”. You have chosen a winner…

  19. Cerena

    Great theme going here…I have to add my juice love all mentioned, Audrey, Sophia, Coco, Monica but recently I have been a little consumed by Marion Cotillard. She is just so talented and beautiful in all her work from La Vie en Rose to Inception, she captivates me and I love her taste in gowns and her coiff is feminine yet modern. Definately though, Coco is my mantra of recent and that won’t change any time soon. Vive la France!

  20. Pam

    Excellent post; very thought provoking. Thank you. I realize I’ve had Katharine Hepburn in the back of my mind as my “she”–as for a more contemporary version, I would go with Jodie Foster. She’s about my age, always looks subtly terrific, is self-possessed, guards her privacy, and is not flamboyant.

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