Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Judy Garland in The Pirate (1948)


The Pirate is definitely a cult-classic musical. It is the second of three times that Gene Kelly and Judy Garland paired up. (The other two being For Me and My Gal and Summer Stock.) It was never considered to be a huge success, but I think it is one of the most entertaining films of the period. But then again, I love pirate movies! Gene Kelly makes for a great swashbuckler and bonus: you get to see his legs in this movie! They are as well-muscled as you would expect them to be.

But I digress: This film is super-fun and has some great numbers in it. In one of them, “Mack the Black” she is hypnotized and throws caution to the wind. She gets rid of her bulky period clothes and lets her hair down (literally) and performs for the crowd. It is this costume that I chose to recreate.

Here is my interpretation:


Run-Down:
Shirt: Anthropologie, Torsade Tee, $48
Skirt: Karen Kane Embroidered Skirt, $65.90, via Nordstrom
Shoes: Gap, Leather Ballet Flats, $39.50
Bracelet: Gypsy Leather Eco-Bangle, via ArtFire.com, $20
Earrings: Silver Gypsy Hoop and Pearl Earrings, $13, via Etsy seller TheSilverDog
Total: $186.40

This outfit is very simple, with most of the interest coming from the jewelry. But, I still had very specific ideas about the shirt and skirt. The shirt had to have some sort of wrap or knot in the center to give it some interest. This tee from Anthropologie fit the bill perfectly. The skirt needed to be mid-calf length and preferably have some embroidery to echo Judy’s petticoats which show when she is dancing. This skirt from Karen Kane has some embroidery and has the swingy, flowing feel. I wish that the embroidery was in a contrasting color but you can’t have everything, right?

The shoes are simple black ballet flats. They need to be very simple in order to keep the outfit from becoming a gypsy or pirate caricature.

The earrings are from a seller on Etsy and they matched the feel that I wanted and kept the price low. They look a lot more expensive than they are. I selected this leather bangle to avoid having to buy several bangles but you get the same effect. I also love that I am mixing brown and black again, something I have been trying to get comfortable with and incorporate more.

Having taken tribal bellydance classes for the last three years, I am very comfortable with this aesthetic and with long skirts, bold jewelry, etc. Is this look wearable in everyday life? Certainly, I wouldn’t wear it to work but on the weekend or running errands, I definitely think this is practical. What do you think?

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