Look-of-the-Day

 

vera-ellen-3Merry 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.  Thevera-ellen-5 dressvera-ellen-4 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! <3vera-ellen-6

Look-of-the-Day

Audrey Hepburn has donned the most famous little black dress, so it’s no surprise she’s probably worn the most iconic red dress, too!  For our final Valentine’s week post, we’ve chosen Hepburn wearing this legendary strapless, column gown by Givenchy in the 1957 film, Funny Face.  Her character, Jo Stockton, goes from a mousy bookworm to an international model, and this is her infamous arc – running down the steps of the Louvre in Paris, coming into her own, just like her sister statue at the top of the staircase, The Winged Victory.  (FYI, it’s really hard to recreate this shot when visiting Paris, because this place is always crawling with tourists… Hehe.)  The gorgeous clothing in this film is from the often-paired Edith Head and Hubert de Givenchy.  Who knew their partnership, and sometimes rivalry, would appear in so many historical cinematic moments?! <3

Look-of-the-Day

It’s the first day of February, which means theSkinnyStiletto is featuring fashion from some of our favorite romances, in honor of Valentine’s Day!  Here, the magnificent Audrey Hepburn plays Princess Ann, a girl who is fed up with being told what to do every minute of the day, and flees the Italian palace she’s staying in during her European tour for a little Roman Holiday.  The majority of the film, she’s donning an adorable button-down shirt, skirt, scarf and gladiator sandals, but at the start of the movie, she’s a stunning and regal royal.  Longtime collaborator and famed costume designer Edith Head won one of her eight Oscars for her work on the 1953 romantic comedy (her sketch for this dress is shown below).  At the beginning of the film, she puts Audrey in this long, white, beaded and brocade off-the-shoulder ballgown, adorned with ribbons, medals, a red sash, and probably the prettiest tiara of all time.  (This editor attempted to go as Princess Ann for Halloween one year, and guess what?  I couldn’t find a gown or fake jewels that looked even remotely like this – no kidding!  Audrey’s lucky she always had Edith Head and Hubert de Givenchy by her side!)  Hepburn looks lovely as a prim and pretty princess, accessorized with beautiful jewels, delicate long white gloves, and a pair of conservative pumps that she can’t seem to keep on, after spending so much time on her feet greeting other dignitaries!  Her character is elegant, but she’s also trapped by her own fate.  As gorgeous as she looks here, you can see the longing behind her eyes just to break free (even for a little while) to experience the world on her own terms.  She does escape and enjoys her own short holiday, but honor and duty lead her back to the life she was destined to lead.  It’s our favorite romance of all time. <3

Look-of-the-Day

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!

Look-of-the-Day

One of our favorite holiday movies is the 1945 classic Christmas in Connecticut, and for this Sunday post we’re featuring Barbara Stanwyck as a journalist posing as a housewife in the post-WWII film.  She plays Elizabeth Lane, a happily single girl from New York City, who pens a fake column about being a happy homemaker in the suburbs.  Renowned costume designer Edith Head outfitted Ms. Stanwyck for this screwball comedy.  Here, Elizabeth’s friend and chef Felix, played by S.Z. Sakall, shows her some kitchen basics while she dons a gingham dressed adorned with a clean white collar, but we all know she’d much rather be in her new mink coat in front of a typewriter instead…

Look-of-the-Day

Happy Holidays!  We here at theSkinnyStiletto have been on hiatus since September.  In the past few months, one of our editors moved across the country and has been in the midst of looking for jobs, and the other has been swamped with work, lost power to Hurricane Sandy, crashed a computer and had two weddings in two weeks, making it difficult for either of them to post.  Now we’re back for our second edition of the “12 Days of Christmas Countdown!”  For this “Fancy Friday,” we’re featuring Vera-Ellen and Rosemary Clooney as sisters Betty and Judy Haynes in White Christmas.  In this 1954 film, the sisters, along with a pair of G.I.s, start a singing and dancing group at a Vermont Inn.  This iconic holiday image shows the four famous faces adorned in Academy-Award costume designer Edith Head’s Christmas creations.  Red satin and velvet gowns trimmed with white fur bring to mind some classy versions of Mrs. Claus costumes.  It’s not our favorite Christmas movie, but it’s certainly one of the most famous.

Look-of-the-Day

Each, in its own way, was unforgettable. It would be difficult to – Rome!  By all means, Rome.  I will cherish my visit here in memory as long as I live,” Audrey Hepburn replies when asked what her favorite European city is, in the final scene of Roman Holiday.  The 1953 classic made Hepburn, Italy and Vespas wildly popular following its release.  Hepburn plays Princess Ann, a young girl feeling trapped and restless in her life of patriotic duty. While visiting various countries on a European tour, Ann decides to go AWOL in the historic city of Rome.  During her journey, she falls in love with an American journalist (played by the dashing Gregory Peck) and grows into an independent adult along the way. Princess Ann knows the fairy tale can’t last forever though, and after returning to her regal responsibilities, this sophisticated woman has appeared, leaving behind her youth and long locks.  Legendary costume designer Edith Head created Audrey’s outfits for this film (and won an Academy Award for it – as did Hepburn’s performance).  Here, Princess Ann demonstrates her poise in this mature, belted, white lace wrap dress with dainty gloves and a pearl choker.  Roman Holiday was the first American film to be made entirely in Italy, and it ended up being one of the most romantic movies ever made! <3

Look-of-the-Day

We’ve mentioned that one of our editors was almost named for this 1954 classic, but we’re amazed that we’ve only featured Sabrina one time over the last year, when nearly every look in this film could be walked down a runway!  Here is our idol, Audrey Hepburn, playing the title character, with the object of her affection, William Holden as David Larrabee.  Sabrina is the daughter of the Larrabees’ chauffeur on Long Island.  After studying culinary arts in Paris (and becoming a woman along the way), Sabrina returns to New York barely unrecognizable to her childhood crush.  David invites her to a party at his home, and she sports this stunning strapless black and white gown with long white gloves and black pumps.  The column dress has a detachable overskirt with an underlay of black tulle, and was hand-embroidered with silk thread and jet beads.  Hubert de Givenchy personally created most of the outfits for Hepburn, yet Edith Head went on to receive the Academy Award for Best Costume Design (which was not without controversy, since Givenchy did not receive due credit for his spectacular work.  Although Givenchy has been the one forever associated with the gorgeous wardrobe in the film.)  Fun Fact: The relationship that developed between Hepburn and Givenchy on the set of Sabrina resulted in a lifelong friendship, and Audrey became the French designer’s muse!  This work of art has to be one of our favorite fashion moments in history, and the perfect “Fancy Friday” tribute to romance this February.

Look-of-the-Day

This “Fancy Friday” happens to be 1940s screen legend Barbara Stanwyck from the romantic comedy Christmas in Connecticut.  This editor’s sister pulled this movie off the shelf at their local library years ago, and it was surprisingly hilarious!  Stanwyck stars as Elizabeth Lane, a single writer from New York who pens a column about traditional cooking and housekeeping from the point of a view of a housewife, even though she doesn’t do a stitch of physical labor…  When an injured sailor returning home from WWII is interested in visiting her fictional home in Connecticut, she realizes it’s her patriotic duty to… well, lie to him!  It doesn’t help that he’s drop-dead gorgeous, and Miss Lane is supposed to be a Mrs!  Here, Elizabeth wears a beautiful, long black gown and a cropped, white jacket with fuzzy trim, while she gets distracted trimming her fake Christmas tree.  Fun Fact: The legendary costume designer, Edith Head was actually borrowed from Paramount Studios to outfit Ms. Stanwyck, alongside Warner Brothers costumer, Milo Anderson.  Below, we’ve included the link of Dennis Morgan as the handsome serviceman singing to Stanwyck.  You can imagine why “O Little Town of Bethlehem” was our favorite holiday song for quite sometime…

What About Breakfast at Tiffany’s?

Breakfast at Tiffany’s celebrated its 50th anniversary this month, which is the reason every article this week has been about the famous film.  Based on the novella of the same name by Truman Capote, Breakfast at Tiffany’s tells the story of a seemingly glamorous party girl named Holly Golightly in New York City and her new neighbor, Paul Varjak, who she nicknames “Fred.”  While the book is certainly different than the film (Holly is blonde, Fred is gay – as made famous on an episode of Seinfeld), but the story of a lost Manhattan party girl laid the groundwork for many famous pieces of fiction with the same premise including, most notably, Sex and the City.  Directed by Blake Edwards, both he and Truman Capote preferred Marilyn Monroe for the lead role, but her agent thought it was a bad idea.  (We personally think the movie would have lost much of its charm if Marilyn was the star – while playing a well-dressed call girl is all Miss Monroe actually was, we feel it  just would have been a sad commentary on the troubled actress’s real life.  Plus, we’ve always preferred the elegant brunette over the blonde bombshell…)  Audrey Hepburn is the epitome of taste and elegance, so it made more sense to have her play against type in this romance.  While Holly Golightly seems like she’s always having a good time, she’s actually dying inside – and beautiful clothing is the perfect disguise.  The costume supervisor on the film was Edith Head – the 8-time Academy Award winning film costumer who outfitted Audrey in many of her movies.  The majority of Holly Golightly’s wardrobe was designed by the legendary Hubert de Givenchy.  The French designer and Hepburn met in their early 20s while they both worked on the 1953 film Sabrina (another Audrey flick with fantastic fashion).  The film went on to win an Academy Award for costume design, for which Edith Head received all the credit for (which also kind of happened on this set…), which Hepburn was not happy about and swore would never happen again.  It’s no surprise the two became lifelong friends, and Audrey became the elegant designer’s #1 muse.  (Fun Fact: Givenchy’s first perfume, L’Interdit, which means “forbidden” was made for Audrey!)  His gorgeous creations included the pink cocktail dress, orange coat, and several little black dresses.  Although Coco Chanel invented the LBD, the sensation of this movie and the stir it created with its opening scene, the little black dress became de rigueur for cocktail parties everywhere.  After 50 years, it still constantly makes it onto the fashion “must-have” lists of taste gurus, fashion designers, magazine editors, etiquette experts and even romance websites.  The costumers were quite clever in reusing Holly’s clothing throughout the film.  As a struggling city girl, it would make sense that she would have limited options, but each piece she wears again usually looks different due to her accessory changes.  For example, her little black dresses are seen several times, but she is usually sporting different accents – one LBD appears in the beginning complemented with a big black hat when she’s on her way to visit Sing Sing; it reappears again when she’s wearing a small black hat with a white muff and feathers attached; again at her party she highlights the outfit with sparkly earrings and a huge statement necklace; and another time she comes home from a date with a long, white silk scarf flowing from her neck in the same LBD.  Holly’s famous Burberry trench coat also makes an appearance twice.  Miss Golightly’s penny-pinching shows up in her apartment, too.  While there’s hardly any furniture, the single piece she does have in the living room is actually half a bathtub with some decorative throw pillows.  (Perhaps a metaphor for Holly herself?  A damaged piece searching for her other half that’s easily disguised with pretty accessories?)  Although Holly’s wardrobe is supposed to be “low-end,” she still looks damn good in every scene.  Even her nightwear is even super glamorous!  A pretty peach robe, tux shirt and eye mask with half-up, half-down hair and she still looks gorgeous!  Her accessories, including Oliver Goldsmith sunglasses, long black gloves, strands of white pearls and huge black hats, are legendary and have been associated with the film ever since.  If you’re donning one of those items, people inevitably ask you if you’re channeling Audrey.  (Well, of course we are!)  And even though the movie surrounds and constantly describes the allure of the most famous jewelry store on the planet (Tiffany & Co.), Holly cannot afford anything there.  She famously states, “I think it would be tacky to wear diamonds before I’m 40.”  It’s not age – it’s probably due to the fact she can’t buy them herself, and no man has ever bought her real jewelry.  The only piece she does receive is a Cracker Jack ring from Paul, but Tiffany’s does engrave it for them! <3  In short, Breakfast at Tiffany’s has one epic wardrobe that still influences fashion half a century later.  It cemented Audrey Hepburn as a style icon and made several chic items as famous as the movie itself!  Its influence on costume design and classic style is legendary.  It’s theSkinnyStiletto‘s all-time favorite film wardrobe, and it forever changed the look of women everywhere.  Just as Paul said, “You’re a stylish girl, can’t we end this stylishly?”  Yes, we can.