Sunday, May 07, 2006

Let the Carnival begin! The Carnival of the Couture

The topic: Clothes on Film. The question:

"What movie, TV show or video featured clothes that made an impression on you? What movie, TV or video wardrobe did you try to emulate? How many times did you dress up as Emma Peel (or for the mens, John Steed) at Halloween, and if not, why not? 'Fess up, I know you have at least one vest a la Annie Hall, or torn sweat-shirt a la Flashdance, stuffed back there in your Closet of Shame."

People are feeling a lot of 50s love right now.

The Style Graduate is loving the 50s through
Reese Witherspoon's "Ring of Fire" wardrobe. She's also seeking ways to reproduce the look in real life. Go Style Graduate!

Erin at A Dress A Day wants to start a movement, a
"What Would Doris Wear" movement. I'd sure wear the tee shirt -- WWDD!

The Petulant Feminine goes 50s upscale with
Grace Kelly in "Rear Window." The icy Hitchcock blonde never goes out of fashion, does she? I only wish we had more ice and less hott, if you get my drift.

The Fashionable Kiffen isn't crying over the New Look a la Evita.

Lisa writes:
"One movie that's not well known (because it isn't very good) is just full of the most magnificent New Look clothing: THE LAST TIME I SAW PARIS (1954), starring Elizabeth Taylor and Van Johnson. Lots of other famous people are in it, too: Donna Reed (playing a bad girl, no less!), Walter Pidgeon, Eva Gabor, Roger Moore. The clothes are simply stunning; they're by Helen Rose."

Yes, "The Last Time I Saw Paris" (a film version of "Babylon Revisited", poor F. Scott Fitzgerald) is a truly bad film with a truly fantastic wardrobe. Lovers of the New Look have to put up with a lot to get a Clothes on Film fix.

Tailypo writes:

"When I was in high school the popular silhouette was the inverted triangle: oversized tops with enormous shoulder pads and dropped shoulder seams whittling down to lean, long legs. Even footwear was made unnecessarily complicated and fussy – fold down boots, elaborate shoelaces, and oversized slouchy socks. Clothing and makeup were fluorescent and the hair was whipped into permed and frosted whale spouts with cantilevered bangs.

As a sturdy, big-legged farm girl with a face like a frying pan, this was not my best look. So when I went to a college screening of Jean-Luc Goddard’s A Bout de Souffle I was as captivated by the Jean Seberg look. It was as refreshing to me as it must have been in girdled and bouffanted 1960.

Seberg was petite, gamine, and had fragile, doll-like features – her boy cut and capris didn’t really suit me. But the freedom of her style! So trim and simple, perfect for scampering around Paris with your ugly/gorgeous gangster boyfriend. Black and white striped boatnecks or a white fitted newsboy sweatshirt over fitted black Capri pants and ballet flats, elevated from looking sloppy by an interesting shaped handbag or a lovely tailored coat. Her face was fresh and unpainted and her hair clipped to a man’s cut, which came across as soft rather than severe simply because of her youth. In an era that was all about trying too hard, her look typified an effortless cool."

Thanks to Wikipedia, Jean Seberg in "A Bout de Souffle"

Scarpediem at Shoesense breaks the mold (doesn't she always?) with a little "Moonlighting" love.

Shoelover is all over Wonder Woman. (I always wanted a pair of bullet proof cuffs myself!)

Maria at The Runway Scoop liked the funky 80s fashion of "Desperately Seeking Susan" and "Pretty in Pink," and she lived the dream!

Kiss Me, Stace, is right up to date with some Traveling Pants, and turns it into the Defense of the Skirt.

Speaking of the 80s, IFC ran "sex, lies, and videotape" a week or two ago, and watching it I realized that not only do I still own the pieces of Cynthia Bishop's (Laura San Giacomo) iconic outfit of tank top, short denim skirt and cowboy boots,
I still wear it. All together. Like that. My usual venue for that look involves motorcycles and barbequed turkey legs, so it's not out of place, but still, the outfit is pushing the 20-year mark and my knees aren't what they used to be. I'm going to retire the look, unless I find one of those kewl Bundeswehr tank tops, in which case the outfit will get another five years.


Henway Twingo said...

I'm sorry not to have posted earlier, but your Emma Peel mention made me think of one costume that Never transcended the screen into my heart. Usually, while in the darkened theatre, I'm convinced to adopt any look no matter how unsuitable for me. The consciousness is projected forward and the admiral's hat or peasant dress becomes desirable to me. Once I'm tripping over the sidewalk outside- myself again- I realize how glad I am not to have ordered a French foreign legion outfit or Cleopatra getup.

However, a lasting movie costume problem which has always interfered with my suspension of disbelief is the mutilated, midriff-baring catsuit. Within the catsuit and erstwhile realm of garments that cinematically appear both practical and kick-ass: Mrs. Peel, Uma Thurman's hornet suit from Kill Bill 1, Trinity's painted-on latex from the Matrix, Michelle Pfeiffer's Catwoman inspired by legendary Julie Newmar- say no more. Every time I saw these, I wanted one (Oy vey!) and could see why a woman would require a skin tight, but flexible and tough garment (preferably with utility belt or concealments) for the acrobatics of assault she was about to administer.

Conversely, whenever I see the exposed midriff of aggression- a la Jennifer Garner's Electra or Halle Berry's Catwoman- I'm entirely distracted from the dealing of punishment by the absolute impracticality of revealing one's delicate ribs and vulnerable organs to thine enemy. A Catsuit must embody sleek female armor, physical protection that appears to liberate movement (whether it does or not) and highlights the defense inherent in beauty and feminine wiles. Elsewise, it just looks too silly for even me to covet.

Off topic-ish, sure, but it's what YOU made me think of, Clotheaholic. I'm happy to be unburdened. Midriff-baring catsuit, box-office flop. Take that one to the bank, Paramount.

Ellie@Fashion is a Verb said...

My blog is really new so I'm late with my contribution, but here it is.
The always classy Audrey Hepburn

Gidget Bananas said...

Ah, the beautiful Audrey could only ever be fashionably late!

Rebecca said...

Sadly, I chose not to play this time; trying to come up with a worthy contribution to the conversation would only display my cultural ignorance.

My solitary thought: a dream of wearing a Vote For Pedro tee-shirt with a ball-gown type skirt (to an Election Day event, of course). LOL

Fortunately for my family, I am not typically invited to those sorts of events.

Ellie said...

Gidget Bananas- you are so right:)

Heels said...

The first time I saw Breakfast at Tiffanys, immediately afterwards, I set out to create a grand black scarfy thing to hang down from a straw garden party hat (I live in the south--we have hats here) and the first time I wore the hat, a woman asked me to make one for her.

Audrey. Givenchy. What more could a girl want?

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