Frida Kahlo became one of Mexico’s greatest artists, despite being severely injured in a bus accident. Known for painting the most beautiful self portraits, she explained why these were such a great focus for her, “I paint self-portraits because I am so often alone, because I am the person I know best.”Many of us have come to know this artistic talent/political activist through her paintings, but a hidden wardrobe, unlocked in 2004, revealed some new details about this prolific artist’s life and struggles.
1. THIS MERMAID-ESQUE KNITTED SWIMSUIT
While most women wouldn’t be caught dead wearing swimwear made of cotton, Frida didn’t care, and knitted this mint green swimsuit with her own two hands during a time where Lycra hadn’t been invented yet, proving once and for all that women who know how DIY their way into fashion, definitely have more fun!
2. FYI, FRIDA WORE A PROSTHETIC LEG
Frida was disabled by polio as a child, and later left seriously injured during a traffic accident, which forced doctors to amputate her leg in 1953. So she designed this prosthetic leg with embroidered red lace-up boots and a bell attached. Now that’s freaking innovative!
3. THESE CATTY SUNGLASSES ALSO BELONGED TO MS. KAHLO
Frida may not have been a Hollywood celebrity, but she knew how to sport some classic cat-themed sunglasses like a Hollywood actress. Besides, who needs the limelight when you can become historically famous by drawing badass self-portraits.
4. FRIDA’S DNA
Now that scientists have begun to unravel the mystery of our genome, it’s only a matter of time before they figure out a way to successfully clone a human being. So if anyone’s looking to make a clone of Frida, they’re in luck, as her comb has strands of her hair.
5. FRIDA KAHLO’S EARRINGS WERE INTERESTING TO SAY THE LEAST
After Frida died, her husband, Diego Rivera sealed her wardrobe in the bathroom of their Mexico City home. He also left explicit instructions to keep the wardrobe hidden until 15 years after his death in 1957. But Frida’s belongings, like these lovely earrings remained locked until 2004.
6. FRIDA’S FASHION SENSE WAS DEFINITELY ON POINT
According to her friends, Frida found a way to cope with her injuries and pain by creating elaborate outfits like this one. Some might say that it was her way of being in control of something despite losing so much control of her own body. If she were here today, she’d probably hear people scream “You go, girl” at her all the time!
7. SHE WORE THIS TEHUANA DRESS
Since Frida’s right leg was thinner as a result of her polio, which was later fractured in 11 places after the bus accident, she wore traditional Tehuana dresses to hide the things that made her uncomfortable.
8. FRIDA’S FRINGED BOOTS
When she wasn’t sporting a prosthetic leg, she wore shoes like these ones. Notice the difference in the height of the heels? That’s because one leg was shorter than the other due to polio.
9. FRIDA’S CAST CORSET
After the bus accident in her 20s, Frida had to wear a full body cast for three months. After the nightmare was over, she decided to paint her casts and corsets to turn an otherwise horrific reminder of her pain into a work of disgustingly beautiful art. Just look at it! Wouldn’t you wear something like this to Coachella? Heck! Even to work!
10. FRIDA’S TEHUANA LACY HEADDRESS
Wearing a headdress like this didn’t just compliment her Tehuana skirt, but it also allowed Frida to celebrate her Mexican heritage in a bomb ass way!