Friday Follies [n., pl.] postings on Fridays about fashion and food in film from guest bloggers with impeccable taste.
In this edition, our fashion insiders’ picks for Best Costume Design:
THE CRITIC’S PICK: AUSTRALIA
Catherine Martin’s clothes for Nicole Kidman were exquisite, from the suit she wore when she landed on the shores of Australia to the Chinoiserie gown she wore to the ball. And they served the epic story.—Booth Moore, fashion critic, Los Angeles Times
THE FASHION EDITOR’S PICK: AUSTRALIA
The purist in me says film costumes shouldn’t necessarily take center stage; their main purpose is to make you believe in the story. But screw realism this year. I loved the costumes that stole the show. For me, that was Australia.—Kristin Young, fashion editor
THE FASHION EDITOR’S PICK: REVOLUTIONARY ROAD
While I think the costumes were breathtaking for Australia—I’m a huge fan of Catherine Martin—I think it’s often more challenging to work with more modern-day costumes. Creating a balance between being historically correct as well as modern, all the while adding to the film is unbelievably difficult and I think Albert Wolsky was pitch perfect. He used the clothes in Revolutionary Road in creating palpable tension for the characters, so much so they truly enhanced the scenes, most notably the argument outside the car between Kate and Leo.—Kim Friday, Senior Fashion Editor, WWD
THE STYLIST’S PICK: MILK
While 70s movies are usually way over the top, the costumes were wonderfully evocative and individually powerful.
—Vincent Boucher, fashion stylist
THE FASHION DESIGNER’S PICK: THE DUCHESS
THE SHOE DESIGNER’S PICK: THE DUCHESS
I love the period costumes but I was especially struck by how beautifully accessorized Keira Knightley’s character was in every scene. The hats, hair accessories, jewelry, pins, fur muffs, and did I mention the hats?? All of them were inspiring and transported us to another era where fashion played an important role in defining the position and character of a person.—Mark Buettell, Creative Director, MaxStudio Footwear
THE AGENT’S PICK: THE DUCHESS
Keira Knightly in all those fab period costumes and corsets!—Julie Kramer, ArtMix Beauty
THE TASTEMAKER’S PICK: BENJAMIN BUTTON
It’s tough not to appreciate all that goes into a period film and all of this year’s candidates take place in an another time, from 1770s England to 1970s San Francisco and the costume designers of each of these films really outdid themselves. Of course, audiences have generally become so much more savvy about period authenticity–while also expecting a thrill from the fashion as much as anything else in the film. Much has been made about the red dress designer Jacqueline West created for Cate Blanchett’s character in “Benjamin Button,” and for good reason. The frock is as key to that moment in the story as Daisy’s words and expression. West has said that Blanchett pushed for the dress to be red, and director David Fincher has admitted to amping up the color even more to highlight the scene’s emotion. A single costume can mean so much to a story’s arc. It can do so much, too, to imprint a character’ effect on the mind, the collective conscience, on movie history. Think Elizabeth Taylor in that white slip in “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.” Or, just last year, Kiera Knightly in that deep emerald sheath in “Atonement.” It’s the stuff that elevates a movie and movie star to icon.—Rose Apodaca, L.A. Vie en Rose
For what to drink on Oscar Sunday, check out Tasting Table L.A.’s picks by clicking here!