Costume designers face a quandary: keep contemporary set films up to date, but ensure that they do not appear hideously outmoded in the future. In short they need to create a look that is both fashionable and timeless. Not an easy task.
With this in mind consider some predicted winter/fall trends in women’s and men’s wear. If you spot any in this season’s movies there is either a seriously forward-thinking costume designer at work, or one who is going to regret his/her choices in the future.
The great Edith Head once got caught showcasing what she thought would be the latest fashions in a film then lived to regret it; forced to see her mistake up on screen over and over again. So spare a thought for the contemporary costume designer, they rarely (if ever) win an Oscar and if they do get it right the couturier normally takes all the credit.
Women’s Winter Clothing Trends:
• Hats (flat, fedora, trilby – see Mélanie Laurent in Inglourious Basterds)
• Camel coats (long, cashmere, MaxMara).
• 1980s Inspired tailoring: Defined shoulder jacket (Balmain), wool sheath dress, leather.
• Pencil skirts, longer-length puffball skirts/dresses, jersey skirts.
• Sculpture dresses (like 1940s Charles James).
• ‘Glunge’ (glamorous and grunge): Tailoring, glossy make-up, splashes of bling.
• Broad shoulders (1940s and 80’s – take inspiration from Diane Kruger, also Inglourious Basterds).
• Accessories: showy jewellery (think Chanel’s costume line from the 1920s), classically styled handbags.
• Long boots and lace-ups, leggings again.
Men’s Winter Clothing Trends:
• Layering, mixing bold patterns and prints; tone-on-tone (like Sam ‘Ace’ Rothstein in Casino, only much less).
• Knitwear – as thick as you like, loose fitting, cardigans with toggle fastening, etc.
• Smart 3 piece suit (Paul Smith). Also the high cut DB for those who can carry it off.
• Military boots. Sure to date badly, though certainly practical in bad weather.
• Plaid shirts. Still in, but time to smarten up with some dark rinse jeans.
• Trench coats. Not too long or too tight – knotting the belt instead of buckling it is a vintage touch.
Of course some films set trends, but that’s for another time…
© 2009 – 2012, Chris Laverty.