Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Elizabeth Taylor in Butterfield 8 (1960)

Wow! This film has a little bit of everything in it. It's heartbreaking, tragic, sexy, steamy and volatile. This was also the film that garnered Elizabeth Taylor her first Oscar win. She was 28 years old and definitely in the prime of her life and her looks. I don't want to give away any details but she plays Gloria Wandrous, a model/call girl who begin a love affair with one of her "clients". There is a glimmer of hope for a better life, but it is snatched away before it can materialize. Anyone who is a fan of Taylor or classic films in general should see this one.

Here I link to a Salon.com article by scholar Camille Paglia who eulogized Taylor and talks a great deal about the impact of Butterfield 8. She can describe it much more colorfully than I can.

This outfit I have chosen to re-create captivated me when I saw it. Perhaps I am a bit clueless but I never would have thought to pair a gorgeous royal blue with brown. The result is stunning.

Here is my interpretation: (Click on the image for a more detailed view)

Coat: City DKNY Blazer Misses 8, on sale for $56.70 via BFHO.com

Dress: Nordstrom, Suzi Chin Maggy Boutique Ruched Faux Wrap Dress in Tobacco, $98
Necklace: White House Black Market, Multi Row Blue Necklace, $64

Shoes: Mootsies Tootsies Women’s Paciano Peep-Toe Pump, on sale for $21.99 via Endless.com

Total: $240.69

Doesn't this outfit just hit the mark on all counts? The necklace has to be a vibrant blue and be multistrand, this was key to making the look work. I love how this dress has some cinching/ruching at the waist, which mimics the severe waist of Taylor's outfit but is modern and updating and comfortable. The shoes keep the cost down but they are classic and add to the overall appeal.

Finally, the coat. Through most of the film, Taylor wears a fur coat that she steals from her gentleman friend's wife. I found this outstanding fur collar blazer from DKNY that has both the brown and blue colors in the subtle plaid for only about $57! The outfit without the coat is eye-catching and professional, but with the coat it throws the whole thing into a realm of real glamour!

Of course, $240 is a bit over budget for this blog, especially given that this look is not for special occasion or job interview. But, it turned out to be so incredible looking that I went with it anyway. Anyone looking to do this look for less would just need to drop the jacket or find a brown wrap dress that is less expensive. Both are easily done, but this was my favorite combination that I discovered.

Do you think this outfit does Miss Taylor justice? Especially as a re-creation of one of her Oscar-winning looks?


  1. Thanks, Taio! I appreciate the encouragement. Please check back often as we add more looks, more movies and more stars!



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