Saturday, June 25, 2011

Costumes we covet...

HALLIE: This week, the incredible collection of iconic movie costumes that Debbie Reynolds had collected over a lifetime went on the auction block. Marilyn Monroe's white dress--the one from Seven Year Itch with the pleated skirt, billowing in a gust of air from a subway grating--went for a record $5.6 million.

"Oh do you feel the breeze from the subway? Isn't it delicious," MM said in the movie. Supposedly her then husband (Joe DiMaggio?) looked on, seething in stony silence.

I love this photo of Debbie (I still think of her as Tammy) with a poster and two costumes from her collection. So sad that the collection had to be liquidated to pay creditors.
Reading abut the auction got me thinking about my favorite costumes from stage and screen. Here are some I'd love to have collected.

Do you know them ? Did I pick ones you remember? What other costumes you covet??

(Could you identify them all? I posted a Who's Who in the first comment!)


  1. 1. Katharine Hepburn in The Philadelphia Story
    2. Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany's
    3. Leslie Caron, after her transformation in Gigi
    4. Grace Kelly in Rear Window
    5. The Girl in the Yellow Dress (Simply Irresistible) from the Broadway show Contact - I looked everywhere for this dress
    6. Ann-Margaret (that dress was also yellow) in Bye-Birdie
    6. Diane Keaton in Annie Hall
    7. Olivia Newton-John (Sa-andy) in Grease

  2. Oh, the memories, Hallie! I admit to a guilty pleasure: Hollywood Treasures on SciFi. The auction house featured in the show is the one, I believe, who liquidated Debbie's collection. In an episode several weeks ago, they visited the warehouse at her ranch in up-state California. OMG! BIG fangirl squeeee! The costumes and props were AMAZING! She's always been a favorite: How The West Was Won, Tammy, Singing in the Rain, The Unsinkable Molly Brown....Too many to name.

    I loved the two Hepburns as well, though Katharine was probably my favorite of the two.

    When a costume becomes iconoclastic, it says a lot, don't you think? I'm hoping HT will devote a couple of shows to the auction so we get a glimpse of even more of her treasures. Thanks for the trip down memory lane today!

  3. Oh, Silver - I'm going to look for that show. I'll Debbie had that little grey-and-white number with the pleated skirt and those kicky gray shoes with bow-straps that she wore to sing "Good morning', good mo-or-ornin', we danced the whole night through..." I want the shoes.

  4. Didn't remember all the film names, but all those fabulous ladies? Of course!! Thanks for the memories.

  5. Always loved Audrey's clothes. But if I could get them--and fit into them--I'd want everything Juliet Binoche wore in Chocolate.

    Wouldn't mind looking like Juliet, either:-)

  6. Full skirts, wide belts... I remember. She was adorable.

  7. I remember thinking that exact dress of Grace Kelly's was the most perfect dress ever, and wondering if I could have one made to get married in. I still wouldn't mind owning one just like it. Hmmm.

    Of course, I also covet anything Ginger Rogers wore to dance with Fred.

  8. What about the emerald green flapper dress that Cyd Charisse wore in the dream sequence in "Singin in the Rain"? One of my favorite dance scenes of all time, and she looked unbelievable!

  9. SO WONDERFUL! ANd I love them all...

    How about Audrey Hepburn's ballgown in Sabrina???

  10. Oh Margaret - I remember that dress. With sequined pelts hanging off it. She was so sexy sultry and what legs!

    YES, Audrey Hepburn's ball gown in Sabrina - I looked it up. Givenchy.

    Tammy, wasn't Ginger Rogers divine? How those dresses -- feathered and chiffon -- flowed when she glided.

  11. I always wanted the gowns from the final scene of White Christmas. Oh, and I wanted Vera Ellen's tiny waist to go with them.

  12. DeNae - red satin trimmed with white fur... those were Gorgeous.

    Yes, it would be nice if those wide flouncy skirts came back... though I no longer have the waist, either, to wear them. Remember cinch belts? Petticoats that scratched the back of your legs?

  13. My favorite rags from the silver screen:
    The black gown with the long black gloves that Rita Hayworth wore in Gilda, when she sang "put the blame on Mame"
    Anything Adrian designed for Greta Garbo to wear while she made out with John Gilbert in the silents
    The tuxedo jacket Judy Garland wore in "A Star is Born" --I saw that one years ago at the Metropolitan Museum.
    I wonder whether Debbie Reynolds owned the Gilda dress.