Films for Fashion: The Kennedys and Pan Am

Last week’s Mad Men challenge, multiple deadlines at the day job, and a house full of mid-stream DIY and repair projects….all nearly ate me alive. I survived (whew!), however, with renewed energy and am ready to finish my show n’ tell of 1960’s on-screen fashion.

I made a deal with myself to wrap this up before I can start watching Season 5 of Mad Men (which started Sunday and is taunting me, begging for me to buy its season pass on iTunes). But, there’s no need to overload the senses. I’ve still got goodies to share…once I do, the girls of Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce can go back to inspiring my sewing.

On to the 60’s fashion-spotting….this time I turned to television dramas, beginning with the mini-series, The Kennedys, that starred Greg Kinnear as the late U.S. President (1961 – 1963), John F. Kennedy and Katie Holmes as the iconic Jackie Kennedy.

The Kennedys (2011), TV mini-series
Directed by John Cassar
Series Costume Design by Christopher Hargadon

 Movie Poster for The Kennedys

Jackie Kennedy, (or  Jackie O.) was a great representation of this fashion era. The show did well styling Katie Holmes (who’s probably much shorter in stature than the real Jackie) as the quietly clever and graceful First Lady.

Jackie Kennedy played by Katie Holmes

Jackie Kennedy played by Katie Holmes

Jackie Kennedy played by Katie Holmes

This white wool suit with wide, black leather belt is my favorite. I’ve always wanted to rock a white skirt suit without looking like I was taking myself too seriously…this one is just right.

Jackie Kennedy played by Katie Holmes

For a hot-minute, ABC got on the 60’s bandwagon (an obvious response to the popularity of Mad Men) and aired one season of the show (before cancelling it), Pan Am. It followed the lives of beautiful, well-groomed Pan Am stewardesses and their equally handsome pilots as they flew all over the world, got caught up in drama, adventure, and romance. All in perfect, 1960’s hat-and-gloved style.

Pan Am (2011), TV show
Created by Jack Orman
Series Costumes by Cortney D’Alisio, Joseph Le Corte, Antoinette Scherer, et al

 Poster for ABC's Pan Am (2011)

ABC's Pan Am

ABC's Pan Am

ABC's Pan Am

And, this one (of course), was the winner of my deepest affection. I either need to renew my wedding vows or get a divorce and re-marry (probably the same guy) so I can make this dress and walk down the ailse in it.

ABC's Pan Am

Films for Fashion: Psycho

I’m back with another film from my recent 1960’s Fashion-Spotting Movie Marathon.

Remember the modern remake of Psycho? Well, it got sh**ty reviews and starred Anne Heche (who I was tired of back then), so I never saw it…until recently, when my Netflix account recommended it for me. Sometimes their if-you-like-this-you’ll-love-that recommendations are pretty accurate…I took a risk on this one. I just wanted a lite horror movie fix while sewing and figured it’d be therapeutic to see Anne Heche’s demise via shower.

Psycho (1998)
Directed by  Gus Van Sant
Costumes by Frank Helmer, Cookie Lopez, and Vanessa Vogel

Psycho (1998)

To my surprise, in the early half of the movie (before Anne gets-it in the shower), I spotted some great vintage fashion. There was so much that I assumed the movie was set in the 1960’s like the original. The original Hitchcockian Psycho is brilliant. However, filmed in black and white, it isn’t the best showcase for my fashion-spotting…I prefer color to catch all of the details. But, the setting of the remake was contemporary (I saw a Ford Taurus drive down the street!)….it was the costumers who dressed the actresses in vintage wear!

So, here’s Janet Leigh (1927-2004) as Marion Crane in the original Psycho.
Janet Leigh as Marion Crane in Psycho (1960)

Now, here’s Anne Heche playing the same character in the 1998 remake. That candy stripe piping is singing to me.

Anne Heche in Pyscho (1998)

Anne Heche as Marion Crane in Pyscho (1998)

This outfit. Sunbrella, totebag, and all, have reversed my irritation toward Anne Heche. She’s a doll!

Anne Heche as Marion Crane in Pyscho (1998)

Even her friend at the office is dressed like she’s in the wrong movie.

Pyscho (1998)

The Psycho remake was weak without Anthony Perkins as the ultra-creepy, split-personality, momma’s boy. So, if you haven’t seen it, don’t. Vince Vaughn tried, but he should stick to dodgeball. Ultimately, the film’s only saving grace is its thrift shop-savvy wardrobe department.

Films for Fashion: Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner

I started this list of fashion-spotting films last month, beginning with An Education. I was hoping it would be the first in my Movie Marathon of 60’s Fashion…but, the movie isn’t available on demand (i.e., iTunes, Netflix), so I assembled my marathon with several hours of entertainment (a few movies, a TV show, and a mini-series) that I could easily stream to the screen above my sewing machine.

Just in time for this week’s Mad Men-themed challenge at The Sew Weekly, I shall continue my tour – one, each day this week for the rest of the month– of selected,1960’s fashion on film with one of my favorite Sidney Poitier movies:

Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner (1967)
Directed by Stanley Kramer
Costumes by Joe King, Jean Louis, and Edna Taylor

Movie Poster for Guess Who's Coming to Dinner

The story is about a newly in-love, interracial couple who must reveal their relationship to their parents. Civil rights was a fresh topic in the 1960’s, so the notion of “mixed” marriage was hard to swallow for both sets of parents. I love how relevant the movie still is, even now….interracial couples (like my husband and I) across America still deal will people’s lack of tolerance and acceptance.

I re-watched the movie in the hopes I’d see some comment-worthy styles of the time, but the girl who plays Sidney Poitier’s fiance and her mother, played by Katherine Hepburn, were dressed unremarkably.

Guess Who's Coming to Dinner, group scene

Just when I was ready to give up on vintage fashion-spotting, the daughter of the fiance’s family maid has a small scene. She walks past Poitier, who notices she’s hot, then she exits the house and runs into a delivery guy who’s in the driveway dancing to some unexplained, groovy 60’s music. The maid’s daughter starts dancing along with him and the two get in a van and drive off together. What?

It was the only odd moment in the movie. And, the only fashion-spotting scene, too.

Guess Who's Coming to Dinner, vintage dress

A pink and coral striped sheath with a ruffled skirt…and, that hair! What a quintessential, late 60’s look! I almost knocked-off this dress for last month’s Oscars Challenge, but I couldn’t find the right kind of striped fabric. If I ever do, it is SO on.

Guess Who's Coming to Dinner, vintage dress