Sunday, June 13, 2010

Jane Powell in Royal Wedding (1951)


This is my second outfit from Royal Wedding. The first was from Fred Astaire, but Jane Powell is likewise fabulous in this movie. She was known for being a semi-operatic singer but she is definitely a good dancer and holds her old with Fred in the many memorable numbers in this movie. She is also super-cute and has an adorable petite figure. She looks great in her clothes.

There are a number of noteworthy outfits that Jane wears in this movie, but this very simple one pictured above stood out to me. To me it looks like a denim skirt with a simple black top and a red scarf. What intrigued me about it besides the chic simplicity of it was the denim skirt. It wasn’t matronly looking or frumpy, nor was it trashy or overly young looking. I wondered whether I could find something similarly appropriate but still flattering.

Here is my interpretation:
Run-Down:Shirt: Old Navy, Women’s Puff Sleeve V-neck Sweater in Black Jack, $22.50
Skirt: Nic + Zoe “Flirt” Skirt, $108 via Nordstrom
Scarf: Land’s End Canvas, Scarf in Rich Red Sailboats, $24.50
Earrings: Betsey Johnson, Round Crown Cubic Zirconia Stud Earrings, via Nordstrom, $25
Shoes: Old Navy, Faux Leather Woven Ballet Flat in Black, $19.50
Total: $199.50
Of course, the skirt is the most expensive item in this otherwise very inexpensive look. It had to be just the right skirt to make it work. This one from Nordstrom is exactly knee length, which prevents it from looking like Daisy Duke or a school marm. The wide bit around the waist and the vertical seams make it very flattering and so much dressier than a jeans-style skirt with pockets. I looked at hundreds of denim skirts for this outfit and this one is bar none the best one.
The rest of the items were easy to find and inexpensive. The sweater is the same one I used in my Wizard of Oz outfit, except in black this time. The scarf is the same one I recommended in my Fred Astaire Royal Wedding post. Then I added a pair of very basic black ballet flats from Old Navy.

Lastly, in the film you can just barely see that she is wearing some pretty hefty diamond earrings. I thought this was great idea to make the outfit a bit more luxurious by adding a touch of glamour. I seem to pick Betsey Johnson a lot for earrings as you can see here and here. This lovely cubic zirconia pair of studs is a steal at only $25 and adds a lot of sparkle for the money.

This outfit is an exercise in simplicity and fit. This outfit could be worn to the office on a casual Friday, out to the movies, a weekend barbecue, sightseeing, or pretty much anywhere where casual but chic comfort is called for. I think it shows the power of selecting one very well chosen (perhaps expensive but not necessarily) basic and building around it to create something special.

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