February 6th, 2013
Black History Month, Blacks in Fashion, Celebrity Style, Fashion
Black History Month on the Fashion Bomb: Eartha Kitt’s Influence on Fashion
By Faith

Eartha Kitt was the definition of the word “fierce”, purring and sashaying her way across the stage, television, and movie screens in a career that lasted over sixty years.

Photo of Eartha KITT

Born Eartha Mae Keith in 1927, Eartha became the talk of radio, Broadway, television, and film, with her petite yet curvy figure and sultry vocals. She began her career as a dancer in New York in the ’40s as a member of the Katherine Dunham Company: the first African American modern dance company that also helped to launch the career of Alvin Ailey. Eartha recorded hits including “C’est Si Bon” and “Love for Sale” which she performed not only in the States, but at Parisian cabarets, solidifying her place as an international star. She spoke four languages and sang in seven, bringing a bit of culture to the masses.



Once uttering “I am the original Material Girl”, Eartha was always seen in the most glamorous of fashions. She sported pearls and feminine silhouettes in the recording studio and showstopping gowns while onstage.

Eartha Kitt


See her sing her signature tune “C’est Si Bon” here:

Eartha took over the role of Catwoman in the Batman television series in the late ’60s after actress Julie Newmar left the role and left an indelible mark as the character.


Eartha influenced modern-day Catwoman characters played by Michelle Pfeiffer, Halle Berry, and Anne Hathaway. That inspiration showed up in the Fall 2011 runway collections by PPQ and Givenchy.


ppq-fall-2011 ppq-fall-2011-1

givenchy-fall-2011-1 givenchy-fall-2011

Head-to-toe animal print was always on the menu for Eartha. The number of designers and celebrities sporting the bold look over a century later are too many to count.




Rita Ora leaving the South Place Hotel in liverpool street then at a office building named Wise Buddah Creative Ltd


Can we ever forget her role in Boomerang which was full of the hottest ’90s fashion?


Actress Regina King remade Eartha’s memorable Ebony cover for the magazine’s 65th anniversary.

ebony-regina as Eartha Kitt

In 2006, she hit the runway for the Heart Truth Red Fashion Show and put everyone else to shame. Get into her gams!


Eartha was a testimony to the fact that a woman’s sexiness doesn’t have to overshadow her brilliance nor her talent. In a world where women have so much freedom when it comes to sexuality and aren’t afraid to show it, we all could learn a thing or two from Mrs. Kitt.



Stay tuned for more of our favorite artists in our Black History Month series!

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39 Responses to “Black History Month on the Fashion Bomb: Eartha Kitt’s Influence on Fashion”

  1. gorgeous!!!! thank you for this lesson

  2. Scarlet says:


  3. Marsha D says:

    “Eartha was a testimony to the fact that a woman’s sexiness doesn’t have to overshadow her brilliance nor her talent.”
    Tell that to half these chicks running around half dressed and talentless! I live! Great Post!

  4. Angela says:

    Everything about this lady spelt awesome! Fantastic read.

  5. Martinique_Fr says:

    Again… Great Post! … Really loving this series.

  6. Natasha says:

    Never saw such early pictures of her: stunning!

  7. RHONYC says:

    ah! her rollerset SENDS ME!!!
    now i’ve gotta hear “what ever Lola wants”. ;-)

  8. Pinky says:

    luv this. Great job.

  9. E says:

    This is an AWESOME Post!

  10. Savage says:


  11. jeda says:

    ooh la la, c’est si bon…I loooved this woman. Thank you for featuring her.

  12. Jei says:

    Yaaasssss!! Love it! Singing in 7 languages..honey..&& that leg..yesss. Definitely an inspiration.

  13. s says:

    Awesome Post!! Love, love, love it. Ms. Kitt was the epitome of sexiness and class, a combination that few embody in today’s fashion world. Many try, but miss the mark. Thank you for sharing.

  14. Amber says:

    Love love loved this post! Though my style isn’t quite ‘classic’ I admire the style of Eartha Kitt and other legendary black women from her era.


  15. danielle says:


  16. Porscha says:

    Great feature. Very elegant woman.

  17. Joanna says:

    Amazing! Love it :)

  18. Almost brought tears to my eyes! Excellent post and I LOVE that last phot of Mrs. Kitt! Keep em’ coming!

  19. MelyB says:

    Thank you for this. Ms. Eartha was fabulous.

  20. Jezebel says:

    Awesome post

  21. binks says:

    Eartha was THAT chick! Ladies today need to take a note or two from momma Kitt!

  22. Devon M says:

    It’s Regina King, not Hall. Great post!

  23. Frieda K says:

    Great post! Love Eartha and her mad voice and omg miss gwen and that outfit are <3ly

  24. Alex says:


  25. Bre Bre says:

    Yessssss…. Miss Kitt serving for the queenz and kids!

  26. itsjustme says:

    all hail eartha kitt! also, was this a typo: “The number of designers and celebrities sporting the bold look over a century later are too many to count.” if she was born in 1927…?

  27. Jade says:

    My favorite post from you all so far. Terrific C’est Si Bon

  28. CuloNegra says:

    Loooove! I’m such a fan. She is a vision of how I hope to mature. Fun & Fierce!

  29. justme says:

    My favorite post so far, I don’t know how you’re gonna top this one, but I’m eager to watch you try.

  30. FashionOne says:

    Elegance & beauty personified!

  31. tiFFers says:


  32. t-fal says:

    Truly loving this series!

  33. Courtnie says:

    Great info in this post, keep it up!

  34. KBS says:

    Maaaaaarrrrrcccuussss, I not wearing any pant-ties! Love her.

  35. Vanity says:

    I hope this post reminds the women and girls of today that elegance and class can be just as sexy.

  36. Mezniquee says:

    I did a tutorial on Eartha Kitt back in Jan 15 2013 check it out

  37. Oliver says:

    Eartha Kit was sooooo pretty to me. She was one of my childhood crushes. I still remeber her playing catwoman on to series “batman” in the sixties.

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