Saturday, November 1, 2008

Out of the Past, Into the Now ~ Retro-Ware

I try to dress like I'm in a classic film. That is, as much as I can in our contemporary culture. I usually go clothes shopping with an actress, actor or film in mind. Sometimes it's just a concept and other times I have something very specific in mind. I don't always succeed in my ventures but when I do, it's quite rewarding.

I thought I'd share some parts of my classic film wardrobe. These are prize pieces in my closet and I try to wear them when I can. Fall and Winter are prime time as I can go crazy with layers and accessories. One day I hope to further expand my wardrobe and maybe make some pieces of my own.

This is what I fondly refer to as my Robert Mitchum trenchcoat. I bought it at a Banana Republic outlet a few years ago and it's by far my favorite coat! Robert Mitchum in Out of the Past (1947) was my inspiration during the purchase. This coat has become a staple of my wardrobe especially during the Fall months and I always get lots of compliments when I wear it.

If I pair my Robert Mitchum trenchcoat with this hat I feel like a real gumshoe. Got a mystery I can solve? This is either my Dick Powell or my Fred MacMurray hat. Depends on the day.

This is my Kim Novak dress. It was a purely conceptual idea. I had Strangers When We Meet (1960) in mind when I bought it at an H&M. Novak wore a lot of grey and red in that film (along with white and black). This dress had a black belt but I swapped it out for a red one. I wore this to my graduation and to go see Mickey Rooney (see previous post)!

Remember this? This is my Norma Shearer outfit that I wore to my friend Kevin's 30th birthday party (that's him on the left as James Dean). That whole outfit was based on a very specific one Norma wore in The Divorcee (1930) (see the comparison in my previous post). I call that my Norma Shearer skirt. Its from United Colors of Benneton and was in Glamour magazine. Believe it or not, they had modeled an outfit based on Grace Kelly in Rear Window (1954). Score! I was going to call it my Grace Kelly skirt but Norma Shearer won me over.

And finally, my Bette Davis hat. This reminds me of those cloche hats from the 1920s and 1930s. Something Blonde Bette Davis would wear. I had Three on a Match (1932) in mind when I bought this at a DSW Warehouse. You can't really see it but it has a rhinestone buckle!


  1. Cute! I especially love the hats. People should wear more hats.

  2. Wendy - I am totally with you on that one!

  3. Beautiful! The trench could also pass for a Audrey Hepburn trench, but only when in rain :) I'm looking for a hat right now so YAY for hats! :)

  4. Cute times a million! You're so pretty. And how great is that Dick Powell hat? I've been looking for something like that forever now! :)

    I also like your Mitchum coat -- I've got a Bogart one (a long tan trench coat) and a little pink one (my Bacall, of course [not that she ever wore a pink one...they just hang in the hallway together) -- and your Novak dress is classy, sexy, and definitely Novak-ish. ;)

  5. Hey there! I'm loving your hats. My mom just bought a red one sort of like your Bette "cloche" I believe they are called, so I will be borrowing that momentarily :)
    I also noticed that you have Bonjour Tristesse in your consuming list, is it any good? (dumb question, especially since you love Otto haha)

  6. All you need now is the hat and coat Gene Tierney wore in Laura.
    I wonder where they are.

  7. Jonas - I would like to join the Yay for hats club. I just bought a new one the other day! Hats!

    Ginger - Ooh a pink trenchcoat! Nice!

    Sarah - Cloche! Thanks so much for that. I wasn't sure what they were called. I'm waiting for Bonjour Tristesse in the mail from Netflix. Can't wait!

    Arbogast - damn straight! hee hee

    Rollomart49 - I wonder about the articles in movies all the time. Like I would give anything to get my hands on a necklace Shearer wore in The Divorcee!

  8. Let me say (besides "wow!") that it is so refreshing to see women dressing up and actually being concerned about their clothes! Too often, women (to say nothing of the fellas...ugh!) get so lazy and slip on a scrumbly sweatshirt and a ragged pair of jeans. I figure if one loves classic movies, why not dress like them?


  9. You look quite a bit like Natalie Wood, especially in that second photo. Great pics.

  10. You are one slammingly beautiful woman, Raquelle!

  11. Thanks Michael. My boyfriend thinks so too.

  12. He'd be guilty of poor taste if he didn't, and offhand I'd surmise that poor taste definitely isn't one of his problems....

    Seriously, talent and beauty are a seriously potent and rare mixture, and I have a feeling you're going to have an interesting life.


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