Tag Archives: 30s style

Film Style: Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)

Raiders Lost Ark 1981 Marian 12

You know the problem with growing up watching a film as perfect as Raiders of the Lost Ark? You don’t actually realise it is perfect. You are so young and stupid, you think all movies are that good! It is only after spending the next few decades watching several thousand ‘not-quite’ movies, that you get to understand just what a magical combination it is. Fools. They don’t know what they’ve got there!

Harrison Ford is perfect as Indiana Jones. Karen Allen is perfect as Marian. The score is perfect, the pacing is perfect, the fight scenes are perfect, the supporting actors are perfect, the dialogue is perfect. And, oh yes, the costumes are perfect.

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Film Style: Australia (2008)


Elegant black riding outfit
Australia is the next well-deserved entry onto the list of awful films with terrific costumes. There were so many tepid reviews of this movie that I wasn’t expecting much, and, predictably enough, it was a total fizzer. I did expect to at least enjoy the scenery, but the shonky dialogue, cliched characters and haphazard plot were so grating that the beautiful outback setting went unregarded.
At least the clothing was up to scratch – the period covered is 1939 to 1942, and being a loaded aristocrat Lady Sarah can afford to wear some pretty decent togs. Catherine Martin was the costume designer and was later nominated for an Academy Award for her work on the film. She also designed the costumes in Baz’s other films such as Moulin Rouge (for which she DID win an Oscar). Ferragamo created Lady Sarah’s shoes and gloves, and Prada the blue luggage (seen in the image below).
A more detailed view of the same outfit. 30s calf-length cream fish-tail skirt, navy short sleeved jacket with puffed shoulders, and tilted Panama style hat.
The calf-length skirt is set to come back in vogue this autumn/winter, which has above-the-knee afficionados howling with dismay. But you can see here the style needn’t be frumpy, and can even look elegant when worn with a low (ie comofortable) heel. It doesn’t all have to be about stripper heels and mini skirts girls; we know you have legs, no need to prove it endlessly.
The mid-heeled Ferragamo spectator shoes worn in the scene above.
Lady Sarah goes on to wear a series of prim little shirts tucked neatly into jodphurs or tweed skirts. Lord knows how she manages to look so immaculate whilst riding through the desert, mustering cattle, chasing after children and canoodling with Hugh Jackman. My shirts manage to come untucked just sitting quietly at my desk.

Hair slightly frazzled but shirt crease-free

Artfully placed dust marks on shirt, but nothing is a millimetre out of place. Note also the natty buckled riding boots.

She also wears a lot of neck scarves tied cravat style and tucked (of course) into her shirt collar.

Oooh branching out into plaid! Still impeccably tucked.

I should be so tucky, tucky tucky tucky

These shirts must be glued to her underpants.

Working a grey pussy-bow blouse.

Tucking away the moments that make up a dull day. Pussy bow blouse and pencil skirt in teal blue.

Hurrah, a DRESS!! And a lovely one at that, printed 1930s tea dress.

Safari suit and horrendous driving goggles.

Printed peach cheongsam. At that time there were quite a few Chinese tailors working in Darwin.

Sheer printed burgundy cheongsam over peach underdress

These red velvet peep-toe heels by Ferragamo were worn by Nicole Kidman in the ballroom scene, and later released for sale.
Main reason for watching the film, rrowrr.