Saturday, 16 April 2011

Fashion in the Movies: Water for Elephants

Water for Elephants is an upcoming movie based on a bestseller book by Sara Gruen. The film takes us back to the 1930’s when a young man named Jacob (Robert Pattinson) drops out of Cornell, where he is a veterinary student, shortly after his parents die in a car crash. He joins the Benzini Brother’s Circus as their traveling vet, where he meets Marlena (Reese Witherspoon) a beautiful performer and the head trainer’s wife. They fall in love and have to deal with the consequences of her jealous/paranoid schizophrenic husband, August (Christoph Waltz).
I’m very inspired by history when I design. I love classic looks, and since fashion today lacks a lot of the glamour of the olden days, I often find myself trying to incorporate to my designs the elements that made women so elegant back then. When I first saw the trailer for this movie I was drawn to the fact that it is based off a historical novel, Reese Witherspoon looks amazing! So I started to look for pictures of her outfits online and I came across the May 2011 US Vogue, she is on the front cover rockin’ the 1930’s look and there is a beautiful editorial featuring her and an elephant shot by one of my favorite fashion photographers ever, Peter Lindbergh!

Allow me to give you a brief fashion history lesson:
1930’s fashion was very glamorous. Soft feminine styles replaced the flapper look of the 1920’s. Long and elegant gowns, lower necklines, soft gathers and natural waistlines were in style. Movies were very influential during this period, people in the U.S. needed a way to escape the harsh reality of The Great Depression and they looked at the stars of the time to help them do that. Hollywood dictated fashion; movie stars endorsed popular styles and accessories, and were often seen in glamorous evening gowns and furs. Some of the most influential actresses of the period were Carole Lombard, Bette Davis, Joan Crawford, Mae West and Jean Harlow.
            Accessories like brimmed hats, berets and turbans were very popular at the time. Hats were often worn tipped to the side, decorated with netting, feathers, ribbons or brooches.  Short hair was fashionable early in the decade, but long curls gradually made a comeback. Perms became popular and knotted hair nets called snoods were seen as well. Rounded toe shoes, thick heels, pumps, flats, ankle strap styles, slip-ons, lace-up shoes, two toned shoes and buckled shoes were all worn. Handbags were available in many styles and customized with the owner’s initials. Undergarments went trough some changes. Before, corsets with boning were widely used, by this time most corsets had no boning and they had evolved into brassieres and girdles with garters. Later in the decade separates were available.

Water for Elephants is coming to theatres on April 22, 2011
Starring: Robert Pattinson, Reese Witherspoon and Christoph Waltz
Directed by Francis Lawrence
Watch the trailer at:

I'm so excited to see this movie because I know that the outfits are going to be amazing! I feel that it will be a nice story, maybe somewhat predictable, but I love romance, so its all good! 

Vogue - May 2011 - Reese Witherspoon

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