Friday, May 13, 2011

Alicia Silverstone in Clueless (1995)

Yesterday Alicia Silverstone had a baby boy yesterday and named him Bear Blu. She is a bit of symbol for my generation - kind of like a Molly Ringwald for the 1990s. I was obsessed with her in The Crush and the obsession grew with Clueless -- a film that I consider to be The Breakfast Club for the 1990s.

Everyone I went to high school with was in love with this movie. We would have slumber parties just to watch it together. This is also one of the first places that we see Brittany Murphy (as the geek madeover by Alicia's Cher character) and Donald Faison, who is most famous for playing Chris Turk on the TV show, Scrubs, which I am likewise obsessed with. This is a great example of a "modern" classic film. Even though this was made in 1995, the film has had a tremendous impact on culture and is still funny/relevant/watchable today.

This film started so many trends, but when you watch it, the fashion is really over-the-top and mostly un-imitable. but this movie brought back knee high schoolgirl socks LONG before Britney Spears hit the scene. And that is the look that I chose to re-create today.

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

Shirt: Land’s End Canvas, The Heritage Oxford Shirt in Bayshore Blue, $34.50
Vest: New York and Company, Argyle V-Neck Vest, on sale for $17.99
Skirt: Land’s End Canvas, Women’s Cord Mini Skirt in Maplewood, on sale for $19.99
Socks: Macy’s, Hue Soft Opaque Knee High Trouser Socks in Espresso, $6
Shoes: Sofft Florence Chocolate Suede Mary Janes, on sale for $76.97 via Zappos
Total: $155.45

This outfit seems pretty complicated with lots of pieces to coordinate but it came in really inexpensive because I was "virtual shopping" off-season. Almost everything was on sale. Great basics from Land's End Canvas and then picking up on the Argyle pattern in the sweater, also on sale. Then some brown Mary Janes that are from a really comfortable brand with some basic brown knee socks. Only a little over $150 total. If you were purchasing in-season you would have a lot more choices for the sweater and pattern but you would probably pay full price.

I think this look is academic and very classic. I don't think this will ever look dated. The short length of the skirt keeps it very Clueless and prevents the frump factor from creepy in. What do you think? Any other wearable looks from Clueless you can think of?

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Lady Cherry Loves and Double Indemnity

Lady Cherry Loves is the cutest little blog about vintage style and vintage living from across the pond. Lady Cherry has wonderful thoughts about the intersection of film, fashion and the royal family. Hollywood Fashion Vault recently had an exchange with her to discuss her favorite (or favourite) style movies for our blogger interview series! If you are enamoured with vintage fashion, you should add her to your reading list immediately! Thanks Lady Cherry for sharing your thoughts with us!

Hollywood Fashion Vault (HFV): What are your favorite style movies?

Lady Cherry: Definitely from the film noir genre. My favourite, which I blogged about recently, has to be Double Indemnity - Barbara Stanwyck takes my breath away in practically every scene. I also love Rita Hayworth in Gilda (no doubt will be subject to a post soon!) Then again, I squealed with delight when Grease was screened on tv a couple of weeks ago - so my fashion tastes stretch from the twenties to the sixties really, although I the forties are my favourite!

Double Indemnity (Universal Legacy Series)HFV: Can you remember any specific pieces or outfits you wore that were inspired by a film?

Lady Cherry: I bought a high waisted skirt after watching Double Indemnity. It falls just below the knee and it is one of my favourite pieces. I wear it with cap sleeved jersey tops that have a little detail (a bow or a ruffle or two), and with shirts. I always feel amazing in it when I wear it, and it is hugely flattering to me pear shaped figure....if you don't have one, you need to get yourself one!

HFV: How do you incorporate retro and vintage elements into your wardrobe?

Lady Cherry: I wear *something* with a vintage or retro element every day. I don't feel right if I don't. I usually go for a key piece that gives it a vintage feel, then compliment it with accessories - t-bar shoes are a staple! I also wear seamed tights or stockings on most days....of course, it depends on the outfit. I nearly always wear dresses and skirts, trousers are reserved for very cold days! I enjoy the celebration of femininity that wearing vintage clothing brings for me. Particularly when inspired by the forties. It was a time when women wanted to still feel feminine, and it was important to them to feel that, but they also demonstrated that they had just as much strength of character as any man, could work like a man, be just as resilient......amazing times. They did much more for woman's status than any bra burning activities, in my opinion.

HFV: Do you have a style icon? Who is it and why did you pick them?

Lady Cherry: I have several style icons. One of them is Princess Margaret (see below for more info); I love the way that her style changed with each decade but she remained at the cutting edge, a trend setter rather than a follower. I also love Grace Kelly in the fifties. I think Grace was the perfect name for her, it just seemed to exude from every pore and really shone through in her personal style. I also love the fact that even though she was a high profile Hollywood princess, then a real life one, she always insisted on doing her own hair and make up when she could; she wouldn't have anyone do for her what she could do herself. I am still searching for the perfect pair of gloves to finished any outfit!

HFV: What’s on the horizon for Lady Cherry Loves? What are you excited about?

Lady Cherry: What's next? I am really looking forward to the numerous vintage inspired events coming up over the summer, and to meeting more like minded bloggers. Later this year l will be moving my blog to a different host, and will be launching a small online vintage boutique - l am always coming across vintage clothing that doesn't suit, or fit me, or isn't quite my style, but is too lovely to leave behind. So l have been hoarding it to sell on. Eventually l hope to make vintage style pieces to sell, too - love to sew, but right now l am making things just for me! So there is lots to be excited about right now - and the sun is shining, too!

HFV: Also, being from Britain, what is your take on the royals and how they impact style? Have you ever copied a look from a member of the royal family?

Lady Cherry: What a question! I think that Britons have a love-hate relationship with the Royals. There certainly have been some style icons...going back to Queen Victoria, surprisingly. Queen Vic is the reason why white wedding dresses are 'traditional' - until she wore a white once in a lifetime dress in 1840 to marry Prince Albert, brides usually just wore their Sunday best. (In Britain, one would save their best outfit to wear to church on a Sunday, hence the term 'Sunday best'). Princess Margaret was a big style influence between the fifties and seventies. In fact, the Duchess of Cambridge's wedding dress was more like Princess Margarets' when she married in 1960, than Princess Grace's. For some people Diana was a style icon, but not for me - she was more like a clothes horse for me (sorry!) Now it looks as though the latest addition to the Royal family is the newest style icon - the dress that she wore when she and Prince William announced their engagement, and for the official engagement shoot, both sold out in days. I cannot say that I have ever copied a look from a Royal, but I will admit that I bough a dress in a similar blue to the one that the Duchess of Cambridge had on when they announced their engagement! to be honest, I am not one for copying outfits. Inspired by, yes; copy...I will leave that to others!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Norma Shearer in The Women (1939) Take 3

The Women is one of the most fabulous films from 1939 -- that landmark year in the history of film! This is my fourth outfit from this film (one from Joan Crawford and three from Norma Shearer.) You can see all of my posts from this movie here.

In The Women, Norma Shearer's happy marriage disintegrate because of her husband's adultery with Joan Crawford. The outfit above appears when Norma is watching home movie reels of her happy honeymoon with her young daughter. She is melacholy over what she has lost. In the film reel, Norma's character has been fishing on a boat wearing sandals, sailor pants, and a nautical striped crop top. (To me, the crop top is a visual manifestation of her vulnerability at this stage in her life. Her happiness and openness becomes a liability later when things fall apart.)

While she is wearing a crop top, her tummy is still covered. I personally am too modest/self-conscious for a crop top. So, I wondered how I could re-create this great nautical look and still use a crop top?

Here is what I came up with: (Click on the image for a larger and more detailed view.)

Top: Michael Stars Riveria Stripe Cropped Pocket Tee in Black, $29 via Revolve Clothing
Bodysuit: American Apparel, Cotton Spandex Jersey Basic Bodysuit in Red, $26
Pants: Loft, Marisa Sailor Pants, $20.99
Shoes: Aldo, Sarhemilie Flip Flop in Red, on sale for $18.74
Total: $94.73

This look is anchored by the sailor pants. These are pretty popular these days and nice looking ones are easy to find at good prices. I like these khaki ones from Loft for only $20.99. I then utilized a bright red bodysuit from American Apparel to make the crop top modest/flattering enough for most women to wear. Then I selected these somewhat dressy flip-flops to match that color. From there, I searched for a slouchy striped crop top and this one from Michael Stars was perfect -- it looks casual and comfortable for only $29.

The entire thing has great lines, a delightful color scheme and is very wearable. The whole thing came out under $100. Wouldn't this be a perfect look for a barbeque at the beach or a 4th of July picnic?

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Clara Bow in It (1927)

It is an amazingly entertaining film for being silent. Clara Bow has undeniable charisma and proves that really you don't need to talk to be captivating, in fact she may prove that words are a hindrance to her kind of mesmerism. This film is where we get the term "It Girl" and Clara Bow was the original. She seems to be utterly natural and un-self-conscious in the film but I would venture to guess that this ease was actually contrived. She has an almost Lolita-ish appeal as the shop girl who lands the handsome rich boss.

The 1920s are a difficult era to re-create outfits from, because most of the looks focus on the dropped waistline popular with flappers. This silhouette produces a boyish look for most women, something we do not find flattering today. Therefore it is difficult to find pieces like this. I did however, find a couple of looks that seem applicable today.

Clara wears this look above when she goes out on a date with her romantic interest to Coney Island. She wears t-strap pumps, a pleated skirt, a diamond print sweater with a printed scarf and a beret.

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

Hat: American Apparel, Unisex Wool Beret in Raspberry, $24
Scarf: Chevron Print Scarf, Pink-Blue, $45 via Robin Dira Unsworth
Sweater:, Hayden black cashmere Argyle boyfriend sweater, $118.99
Skirt: Urban Outfitters, Sparkle & Fade Knee Length Pleated Mesh Skirt, on sale for $19.99
Shoes: Urban Outfitters, Kimchi Blue, Wingtip Heel, on sale for $39
Total: $246.98

Starting with the basics, I found a gauzy pleated skirt and t-strap shoes from Urban Outfitters. Both pieces were perfect and on sale. Building from there, I found this argyle print cashmere sweater, which mimics the diamond pattern on Clara's top. It is a bit pricey since it is cashmere but two things really put this piece over the top for me: the fit is a boyfriend fit which will hit at the mid-hip area when worn over the skirt (echoing the flapper silhouette) and there is a thin line of fuchsia in the argyle pattern (which will coordinate with the other accessories).

Then I needed to finish off with the scarf and beret. Taking my cues from the fuchsia in the sweater, I decided to go with a very cheeky "Raspberry Beret" -- the kind you find at a second hand store. I think if Clara Bow lived today, I could totally see that Prince song being one of her favorites.

The last piece had to be a chevron striped scarf which played off of the raspberry/fuchsia colors and had the right scale of a print to work with the argyle in the sweater. This one is a bit pricey for a scarf but it meets all of the criteria I had to make this look work well. I think mixing the two seemingly clashing patterns (chevron and argyle/diamond) is a bold lesson from Clara Bow.

This look could work for a casual Friday at the office and easily transition into a date night "pizza-and-a-movie" kind of look. Although it is a bit pricey, the cashmere will make you feel so luxurious and that sweater will last forever. It's an investment piece that you will be able to remix for years.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Kate's Honeymoon Look

Sorry for the silence this past week. My husband is trying to launch his photography business here in Mississippi and we have had several events and jobs this past week. If you are interested, check out his artwork and portait work with the links in this sentence.

One more Kate Middleton post and then I am done with royal, I promise! I guess I should start calling her the Duchess of Cambridge now, huh? This look is what Kate wore the morning after her wedding leaving Buckingham Palace. This look is so simple and chic and stylish, I just had to try my hand at re-creating it.

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

Dress: Mod Cloth, Frozen Lake Dress, $54.99
Sweater: Macy’s Charter Club Cardigan Long Sleeve, Black, on sale for $29.99
Belt: New York and Company, Skinny Braid Belt, on sale for $9.97
Shoes: Bandolino, Dyani Espadrille in Black, $69 via Piperlime
Total: $163.95

This is another lovely blue look from Kate. This dusty blue offset with black neutrals looks so simple but chic. This little dress from ModCloth is inexpensive and has the same color blue with pleats and a modest neckline, just like Kate's dress. Instead of a black jacket, this structure cardigan with a similar neckline suffices. The belt is simple and cheap too and makes the entire look hang together. Kate's wedge espadrille is matched by this modestly priced one from Bandolino. What an awesome casual outfit!

Kate seems to be becoming a new paragon of modest, elegant style. It's about time we had a style icon that shows us that modest doesn't have to equal dowdy!


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