What Movies Have Inspired Your Style?

by Leandra Medine
October 28, 2013
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If, in the past few hours, you’ve needed to Google someone you met over the weekend or something to that effect, then you may have noticed that the search engine’s logo looks a bit more fashionable than usual. They’re celebrating the late costume designer Edith Head’s 116th birthday today, and we are too.

edith-heads-116th-birthday-5668600916475904.3-hpEdith Head’s cinematic designs are as iconic, if not more, than the movies they were created for. Close your eyes for a moment and picture Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds. What’s the first thing you envision? If you have Ornithophobia, then violent, blood-thirsty crows are probably at the forefront of your mind. If, however, your fear of winged creatures falls to the more logical side of the spectrum (though I’d agree with you phobics: birds are terrifying), then you probably picture a very elegantly dressed Tippi Hedren in monochromatic mint. A woman who looks that chic while running from death can surely only be in the hands of a stylistic genius such as Head.

EdithheadcogHer designs have influenced generations of women’s style. Is the recent full-skirted, mid-calf trend not a direct reflection of Audrey Hepburn in Roman Holiday? In considering all the fashionable gold that has come from Edith Head’s touch, I began to think about other movies that have influenced my own personal style.

I’ve already mentioned that Dead Poets Society is my apex of sartorial aspirations. The Spring 14 SoCal surfer-revival  caused me to revisit another favorite, Lords of Dogtown, because I’m constantly drawn to the laid-back grungy-cool of 1970s Venice Beach skaters.

Since I’m a human/female I’d be weird if I didn’t note CluelessI’m not necessarily walking around in yellow plaid skirt-suits and thigh-high socks, but I am always considering it, or at least musing on how fucking awesome I would look if I did ever find the perfect interpretation of it.

What about the perfection of Katherine Hepburn in Woman of the Year, or Cate Blanchett as Katherine Hepburn in The Aviator? Or any time that Diane Keaton wore a turtleneck? Speaking of Diane Keaton one can’t mention style in movies without noting her role in Annie Hall, and while on the topic of Woody Allen films I can’t help but ask myself, What would the girl who Owen Wilson winds up with at the end of Midnight in Paris wear?

Movies, we all know, have the power to transport us to another planet and suspend our belief for as long as we let them, but it’s the fashion, the style, and the women (and men!) who wear the clothes so damn well that end up really becoming a part of us.

Enough about me — what about you? What movies have inspired your style?

— Amelia Diamond

Film stills from Funny Face, The Birds & Rear Window. Sketches from All About Eve & Roman Holiday. Google logo courtesy of Google.
REPLIES
  • http://longleggedlady.com/ Jessi de Bergerac

    Factory Girl is pure fashion porn. I would kill for Sienna/Edie’s wardrobe.

    • Amelia Diamond

      oh my GOD yes a million times yes.

  • Angeli

    Sad to see no one’s commented on this yet. Personally, I tweeted about the Google Doodle this morning – very excited! Such great contributions by Edith Head. Love, love, love that I’m not the only one excited about this. XX

  • Daniel Lautrec

    Rebel Without a Cause (and James Dean as a whole, honestly), plus Donnie Darko. I’m trying to hone the “Skateboarding to prep-school” look.

  • Quinn

    Because movies go a lot into character depth than a fashion show, the personality behind the clothing is what inspires me. As great as Daisy looks in the recent version of “The Great Gatsby” I found her character needy and annoying. Whereas, Anjelica Huston’s portrayal of Morticia in the Addam’s Family is so great I would consider draping myself in those black gowns. There are also the obvious iconic looks like Marilyn in “The Seven Year Itch” and Gwyneth as Margot Tannenbaum. But then you find a character that makes you say “I want to be her!”. So for me, the person (and clothing) that inspires my persona is Thelma Dickinson from Thelma and Louise.

    • Amelia Diamond

      THELMA DICKINSON yes!!!

  • Amelia Diamond

    wait guys I just had to add one more that I forgot about — James Spader as Steff in Pretty in Pink DAMN did he work a linen suit like no ones business.

    • Courtney

      Oh gurl, preach. And speaking of Pretty in Pink I absolutely adored Annie Potts’ character Iona. So wild.

  • Brie

    There are too many to count! Grace Kelly in Rear Window…or any Hitchcock gal for that
    matter. Lauren Bacall in To Have and To Have Not. Bette Davis in Now Voyager. Clueless, Empire Records and Don’t Tell Mom the Babysitter’s Dead rocked my adolescent world back in the day. Last Friday I did a post on how Audrey Hepburn’s style in Charade is one of my favorite uses of clothes in a film. I added the link below if anyone wants to see the entry. Lots of fun pictures from the film.
    http://www.babygiraffeblog.blogspot.com/2013/10/film-fashion-friday-audrey-hepburn-and.html

    • http://longleggedlady.com/ Jessi de Bergerac

      YES on the Hitchcock ladies!
      Audrey in the beginning of Charade, at the ski resort, with that black hood thing and those oversized sunnies, so perfect. I also loved her makeup and wardrobe in How to Steal a Million.

  • http://www.downtownhautefashion.blogspot.com/ Leslie

    Roman Holiday! Loved it!!

    <3

    http://downtownhautefashion.blogspot.com

  • Tara Hughes

    Any John Hughes film, delicious retro

  • http://Naomipicks.blogspot.com/ naomi martin

    la dolce vita – anita ekberg in that fountain and also the bond films of old had great memorable outfits. but of recent note – blue jasmine

  • Rachael King

    I loved the wardrobe in 500 days of summer. It made me want to buy lots of wide leg trousers and button up blouses.

  • Madame Elenoire

    Pump Up the Volume (Samantha Mathis – I wanted to be her in her big knits and stripey tights) & you have to mention Heathers… the more I think about it most things with Christian Slater… True Romance (leopard print, denim, trainers n raybans). Then of course there’s Twin Peaks (bowling shoes, fluffy knits)… My So Called Life (lumberjacks, red hair fur-lined levis jackets then there’s also the craziness which was Rayanne)… Ed, from Northern Exposure ( the biker jacket, shirt n t-shirt combo with floppy hair) Juliet Lewis in What’s Eating Gilbert Grape?… there are so many. Just realised half these aren’t movies… hahah. Does TV count? Also Annie Hall…(obviously)

  • Courtney

    If TV is allowed, pretty much every character on Designing Women. I can’t get enough of the eighties!

  • http://jessjoycej.wordpress.com/ Jessica Joyce

    I honestly cannot disagree with anything that you claim here, but something between Roman Holiday and Dead Poets Society captures my style. This is one of the best.

    Your Friend, Jess

  • Susannah Bloom

    OMG CLUELESS UGH AS IF… yeah umm I love Clueless.

  • Magda McCann

    in HS all i wanted was to go to a prom (or ANY formal affair) in a recreation of audrey hepburn’s party number in sabrina. i was lucky enough to be in middle school the year clueless came out- my easter outfit was a plaid skirt and knee highs cap sleeve top with a tiny vest… memories!

  • Paula McClelland

    Marla Singer in Fighclub – I love her clunky platform sandals and ridiculous sartorial choices, they’re gold – the bridesmaid dress? “Loved intensely for a day, then tossed like a Christmas tree – tinsel still clinging to it”

  • http://www.anorexicescapades.com/ BougieHippie

    Clueless!

  • Graciela Silva

    For me it was Breakfast at Tiffanys, one of the most feminine films of all times. In fact it was at that time that the little Black Dress became an essential piece in any woman’s wardrobe.

  • http://madamecouture.blogspot.com/ Emma Hager

    Pretty much anything with Grace Kelly in it, I was enthralled by. When I was little I used to play this game where I was Grace Kelly and my friend was Marilyn Monroe. It’s actually what initially got me into collecting vintage clothes. Hats with feathers, laser-cut leather gloves that go up to my elbows, and circle skirts take up a large majority of my closet, but unfortunately not much of it sees the light of day anymore. Anyway, I saw an exhibit of Grace Kelly’s outfits in Montreal this summer and much of the outfits were designed by Head. Even though it has been years since I sat in awe in front of the television watching Kelly movies, I was welling up with tears seeing all these gowns in person that I had once seen on screen. I was really overwhelmed with emotion, perhaps because Kelly’s movies — and indirectly Head — played such an important role in my childhood, or at least in my imaginary games.

  • Galina

    Wes Anderson. Sofia Coppola. Wood Allen. Amen.

  • ♕ Natalie ♕

    Rosemary’s Baby, Clueless, Love Story, The Addams Family (both Anjelica and Christina as Morticia and Wednesday)— you have no idea how many peter pan collared dresses i have, Margot Tenenbaum in The Royal Tenenbaums, Audrey Hepburn in pretty much anything, for a more goth look, The Craft. Tess of the D’urbervilles, Picnic at Hanging Rock, Valerie and her Week of Wonders for the quintessential little white dress. I’m a tiny 5 feet over pale Asian girl who loves the classic, 60s schoolgirl look so I gravitate towards these films for style icons. I do love the va va voom stylings of Ava Gardner, Marilyn Monroe and Rita Hayworth, but they’re not my personal style.

  • Tamara

    Lets talk Molly ringwald…breakfast club (narrow skirt and riding boots) pretty in pink (surprised you didn’t mention it yourself, man repeller!) so original…and that prom dress! And then a nod of course to almost famous (I’ll never outgrow rocker hippie chic)

  • Charlotte Fassler

    Had a major beret moment trying to emulate Bonnie Parker’s chic as shit look. Anything John Hughes or Wes Anderson and who would I be not to mention Cher Horowitz? There are so many to name….

  • QC

    Catherine Deneuve in Belle de Jour- puurrrfect marriage of character and costume. Tilda Swinton in I am Love. Diane Keaton in Annie Hall. Coco Before Chanel but also Coco Chanel and Igor Stravinsky (the perfect white shirt exists in the latter). I died a million times during The Great Gatsby (more from the sumptuous costumes than the sub-par rendition of the story). Finally, any scene with Daniel Craig as James-Bond-in-a-suit.

  • V-ROW

    Ghost world, Kagemusha, Dracula (1931), FIGHT CLUB! cuz Marla Singer is cool.

  • Celeste

    Apologies in advance for being “that person”, but Breakfast at Tiffany’s. Oh boy.

  • Kyla Somerville

    I am inspired by the dramatic. My dream wardrobe would be a eccentric mixture of Blade Runner, Interview with the Vampire, Marie Antoinette, and Memoirs of a Geisha.

  • Juls

    Every Wes Anderson movie, An Education (Carrey Mulligan is so lovely), and Gus van Sant’s Restless with Mia Wasikowsa. To mention a few, because oooh movies and fashion <3.

  • Sarah

    Kim Basinger in 9 1/2 weeks. The hair, the baggy sweaters, the suits, the heavy eyeliner- all of it.

  • CharryNIghts

    Ive always loved the simple beauty of Princess Bride, flowing skirts, long hair, soft eyes. I LOVE Rene Russo as a redhead in the Thomas Crown Affair with her sheer, sequin gown at the black and white ball and her pencil skirt/combat boot combo when she searches Thom Crown’s house SEXXY!! And of course WAYNES World is my main fashion inspiration since childhood! Ripped jeans, mini skirts with pumps and comfy, dirty flannels ;)

  • Elsi Ferris

    the virgin suicides and it’s almost famous!

  • Thery Barja

    i dont care what others may think, but i was a kid and i watched josie and the pussycats and that’s it