“Have yourself a Merry Little Christmas…” Judy Garland swoons in Meet Me in St. Louis, which ended up becoming a very popular holiday carol. What better dress to feature than Miss Garland’s gorgeous red gown from the 1944 classic for a “Fancy Friday” that landed on December 25th?! Judy Garland stars as the main sister of a large St. Louis family who attends a local Christmas ball in this stunning scarlet velvet gown. After returning home from the party, she sings the beautiful carol to her baby sister, Tootie (played by Margaret O’Brien). To be honest, I never saw the film until falling in love with the 2005 flick The Family Stone, in which oldest sister Susannah watches the movie alone on Christmas Eve. It’s a melancholy scene in both films, as both leading ladies reflect on how their next Christmases will sadly not be like their past holidays. It’s heartbreaking, but a thoughtful reminder of how seasons really do change, for better or for worse. Merry Christmas! <3
“I believe… I believe… It’s silly, but I believe.” On Thanksgiving, our editors eat turkey, watch football, pound pie, but we also always watch this 1947 classic – Miracle on 34th Street. Last month we lost one of our all-time favorite tough girls, Maureen O’Hara. In this film, she stars as Doris Walker, mother to Susan (played by the late Natalie Wood), a smart and mature little girl who doesn’t believe in Santa Claus. Doris is a no-nonsense Manhattan woman who works for Macy’s Department Store. The movie opens on the Thanksgiving Day Parade (Fun Fact: The footage in the film was actually from the 1946 Macy’s Parade! According to imdb.com, “retakes were obviously out of the question!”) An older gentlemen who looks suspiciously like Kris Kringle and a handsome lawyer (played by John Payne) try to change the two Walker ladies’ minds about Santa Claus and the Christmas spirit. It’s adorable, and much better than the horrible remake. O’Hara sports some very sophisticated clothing in the film, but this little buttoned black dress with a matching white collar and cuffs is a particular favorite of ours. Costume designer Kay Nelson outfitted the film, and did a wonderful job capturing an elegant NYC girl in the post-WWII era. Maybe our editors love it so much, since it reminds us of our own mother, who appeared in the Macy’s Day Parade 30 years later. <3
This “Wednesday’s Shoe” actually falls on Christmas Day, and we thought these heels certainly epitomize “jingle bell ROCK!” The red velvet pumps are from British designer Charlotte Olympia, whose adorable holly-inspired heels we featured last holiday season (it’s also very fitting, because our editors spent the last two Christmases in Olympia, Washington!) The Jingle Bell Dolly platform pumps originally cost £625. They’d be stunning with a holiday cocktail dress, or help turn you into one sexy Mrs. Claus. 😉
Merry Christmas! It’s the most wonderful time of the year, and it also happens to be “Pink Wednesday!” We’ve found it hard in the past to come up with pink outfits for the holiday season, but while our mom was watching White Christmas earlier this month, we realized there was a perfect rose-colored dress for December 25th! Vera Ellen dances with Danny Kaye in the 1954 film in a stunning pale pink chiffon frock. The dress has sequined details, really cute matching shoes, but the full skirt is just perfect for dance number she performs, which reminded us of Liesl’s famous dress in The Sound of Music. It’s no surprise here, the lovely outfit was created by famous 20th century costume designer, Edith Head. Another blogger whose site is called Ip & Audrey put it perfectly when she said Ellen looks “like a cream-puffed sugar plum fairy!” Here’s hoping you have a wonderful Christmas! <3
Our 2nd Annual “12 Days of Christmas Countdown” ends on a “Tuesday Twosome,” and who better to feature than Lady Mary and Matthew Crawley during their holiday engagement on December 25th?! Michelle Dockery and Dan Stevens play the star-crossed lovers on the hit British television show, and during the 2011 Christmas Special, they finally got together after two seasons of love, sickness, death, pride and prejudice. Lady Mary looks elegant, as always, in a tiered dark red gown, long black evening gloves and her hair swept back, while her cousin Matthew looks dashing in his Edwardian black and white tuxedo with formal coattails. Costumers Susannah Buxton and Caroline McCal won Emmy Awards for their work on the BBC hit last year. Buxton describes Mary’s engagement gown as a “style of dress we’ve not seen before in the series, because we’re on the dawn of the 1920s here… She’s wearing a dress with a slightly dropped-waist because in the 20s, waists dropped, busts flattened, we’re not there yet.” The layered look certainly works for the alabaster beauty, and complements the looks of the fair-haired Matthew. When he finally proposes to Lady Mary on bended knee in the falling snow, we were ecstatic for our favorite fictional TV couple! (We can’t wait for Season 3 to start!) Merry Christmas Mary, Matthew, and all of our readers!! <3
Our editors didn’t actually love Love Actually the first time they viewed it (wow, pun unintended), but after a second viewing, it became one of their favorites! Probably the most notable item of clothing in the Christmas rom-com has to be Martine McCutcheon’s bright red trench coat she wears to her nephew’s holiday play. She portrays Natalie, a brokenhearted girl working for the United Kingdom’s new Prime Minister, played by Hugh Grant. When they realize they’re meant for each other (on Christmas Eve, no less), she’s sporting this gorgeous piece of outerwear over jeans and a pretty snowflake sweater. Costume designer Joanna Johnston outfitted the film, along with many other modern classics, including Saving Private Ryan, Cast Away, The Sixth Sense, Forrest Gump, and Munich. Shockingly, she has never been nominated for an Academy Award. Let’s hope this year, she’s rewarded with a nomination for her work on Lincoln! Even if she doesn’t, we loved her choices for this Christmas flick. When Natalie paired her famous coat with a white cap to greet Hugh Grant, she sailed into holiday cinematic history!
We’ve featured Cameron Diaz in The Holiday several times between our two Christmas Countdowns, but that’s because her character, Amanda Woods, is dressed so damn well! When director Nancy Meyers debuted her more recent film,It’s Complicated, several reviewers kept accusing her of “design porn.” Now we know what they meant, when we look up the crazy price-tags of some of the clothes, furniture and accessories that appear in her chick flicks. (One of the funnier comments from one of the fashion blogs we scoured, trying to find a designer link for this outfit, wondered how did Amanda fit all these fabulous coats into the two suitcases she packed?!) In this scene, Amanda takes Iris’s dog for a walk in a lovely Louis Vuitton wool and cashmere toggle coat, skinny jeans, brown Balenciaga boots and a cute knit cap. No wonder Iris’s brother falls for this beautiful blonde – she always looks good!
Buffy the Vampire Slayer definitely inspires more Halloween memories for its spooky stories, but the cult series did have one Christmas episode on Season 3 entitled “Amends.” Buffy’s boyfriend (and tortured vampire – way before Edward Cullen ever existed) Angel is being tormented by visions of his past victims, including beloved teacher Jenny Calendar. He decides he doesn’t deserve to live and will wait for the sun to rise so he can evaporate once and for all. Instead, in freak of twist of nature – which often happens at the Hell Mouth – it starts to snow on Christmas morning in Southern California, leaving it dark all day long, giving Angel a second chance at life… It also gives Buffy and Angel the chance to spend an actual day together outside, and they look great doing so. While Angel wears his usual brooding black and gray, Sarah Michelle Gellar wears her favorite combo of black pants and boots accompanied by her high ponytail, and a gorgeous winter white trench coat. It’s the perfect Christmas outfit to walk the streets with the dead in (we guess?) But Sarah Michelle looks adorable, as always.
One of our favorite leading ladies is back for this 2012 holiday edition of “Fancy Friday.” In Christmas in Connecticut, Barbara Stanwyck pretends to be an all-American housewife playing hostess to a returning sailor after World War II in her fake suburban country home. In reality, she’s a single city girl with no domestic skills – but she can certainly dress! Costumed by legendary designer, Edith Head, Stanwyck sports several gorgeous outfits in this romantic comedy. Here, she’s wearing a black gown with a diamond-plaid jacket tied with an oversized black bow while attending a community dance with the dashing Jefferson Jones. Good thing he doesn’t mind the scheming and lying just to give him a good holiday vacation – he gets the girl instead of some home-cooked meals – and she gets a pay-raise! Everyone wins!
It’s a Wonderful Life is our favorite holiday movie, so it’s no surprise we featured it twice last year in our “12 Days of Christmas Countdown.” Here are James Stewart and Donna Reed as George and Mary Bailey before they’ve officially become a couple.
George has been working at his father’s Building & Loan to save money for college, and is now four years behind his peers. He tags along with his brother Harry to the local high school dance, and gets to cut the rug with his future wife, Mary, before famously falling in the swimming pool together! Mary is sporting a beautiful, frilly dress adorned with a small rose at the collar paired with adorable peep-toe pumps. In the colorized version, the dress is bright blue, but I’ve always pictured it cream-colored or soft yellow. Donna Reed is also stunningly gorgeous in this scene, so it’s hard to take your eyes off of her. (Honestly, she could be wearing a burlap sack, and we would have featured it!) Head costume designer of RKO Studios, Edward Stevenson, outfitted the film, but is probably best known for dressing Lucille Ball for the last eighteen years of his life. His work ended up being historical as part of this iconic Christmas classic. <3