13 Movies Whose Costumes Made History and Became Unforgettable

year ago

Like any little thing we see on our screen while watching a movie, costumes are also being carefully thought out to the last detail. Sometimes clothes aren’t only used to make someone look appealing, but also to indicate something important about them. For example, costumes can indicate someone’s transition from one age to another or from one state of mind to another. What’s important is to stay true to the character’s self and elevate them through clothing.

1. Peaky Blinders (2013-2022)

Fashion magazines claim that Peaky Blinders sparked a renaissance of classic menswear. A famous search engine recorded a huge number of searches for the keywords “The Shelby look” and “men’s tweed suit.”

Viewers also loved the headwear of the main character — a flat cap, also known as a newsboy cap. The more popular the series was getting, the faster these Shelby-style caps would sell out. In 2016, when season 3 of the series was released, the sales of these flat caps increased by 83%.

2. The Tourist (2010)

Colleen Atwood combined vintage and modern fashion to create a world of timeless chic. This is why there are no screaming clothes in the film, only neutral colors, and elegant simplicity.

This is exactly what the main character wears. The fact that she hides many secrets is hinted at not only by her clothes but by their details, like her gloves and red lipstick, or the peach-colored ribbon on her waist. These little things show viewers that she is a mysterious woman.

3. Squid Game (2021- )

This South Korean series became an international hit in the blink of an eye mostly thanks to its unique aesthetics. Fans were especially impressed by the costume design. The green tracksuits and the pink uniforms that the guards wear have become 2 of the most recognizable elements. This shade of green was instantly recognizable for Korean audiences as it has its roots in the nostalgic tracksuits little kids wore for Field Days back in 1970s Korea.

The colors also were chosen together for a reason that is part color science, part symbolism. That specific pink opposes the tracksuit green on the color wheel, showing that even at the most basic level — the players and guards are opponents.

The Front Man, who wears a full black look and a perfectly symmetrical mask, became one of the most mysterious characters. The director of the series shared that the mask of the Front Man is actually a tribute to the main villain in Star Wars, Darth Vader.

4. The Addams Family (1991)

Ruth decided that the Addams family should look like aristocrats. So, the mother of the family changed clothes 3 times a day: in the morning, she wore a simple dress, during the day — something more exotic, and by the end of the day — the most extravagant one she had. In the evening, she had lace and black jewels on. The most impressive outfit was a coat with a hood based on Edwardian-era clothing.

5. Gossip Girl (2007–2012)

The costume designer of the series chose this blue dress that the prom queen wore at her wedding from the couture collection of designer Elie Saab. “It needed to feel like old world glamour meets contemporary high fashion,” the costume designer said.

6. Casino (1995)

In one of the best movies by Martin Scorsese, clothing played a really big role — $1,000,000 was spent on it. The hardest part was creating Sharon Stone’s wardrobe. She portrayed a character who really loved luxury and glamour. During the film, she wears 40 different outfits that show the social evolution of her character.

At the beginning of the film, she wears lots of gold, shiny dresses and fur. So, it’s not surprising that the gangster portrayed by Robert De Niro is blinded by her the first time they meet.

7. Midsommar (2019)

It took 5 people and 1 month to create the dress Florence Pugh’s character appears in at the end of the film. They sewed 10,000 silk flowers to the dress to make them look natural.

The costume ended up being really heavy, so a chair was hidden under it, so that Florence could at least sit down in between takes. The flower crown was really heavy too. The creators say that the physical difficulties helped the actress play the final part with the necessary amount of drama.

8. The World Is Not Enough (1999)

The costume designers that worked on James Bond movies read the script first, and then did research on fashion tendencies and discussed the clothes with the director. So, the clothes not only looked trendy but also helped show the nature of the characters.

Elektra King’s iconic red dress symbolizes her anger and her silk cape shows her high social status. The red color creates the illusion that she is just a beautiful woman, but not a dangerous enemy. The dress was made entirely by hand.

9. Knives Out (2019)

Ransom is almost always seen in a white wool sweater throughout the flick. Perhaps since he’s the main villain, he’s referred to as the black sheep of the family, which contrasts with the white sweater.

10. Coco Before Chanel (2009)

To recreate the style of the legendary Coco, Leterrier looked at photo archives, went to museums, and looked for the necessary fabrics at flea markets. The viewers found out what the young Coco was like: talented, bright, pompous, and very poor.

Her non-conformist nature is also shown through her clothes. While other characters look feminine, Coco wears men’s style oversize clothes. When others are wearing something bright, Coco chooses dark colors. Thanks to the perfect costumes and great acting by Audrey Tatou, the main character achieves the impossible — she dresses like a clown but looks stunning.

11. Last Night in Soho (2021)

In the film, a fashion college student finds herself in the 1960s where she meets an amateur singer portrayed by Anya Taylor-Joy. The time traveler gets inspired with her peach-colored dress and decides to make the same one in the real world.

The costume designers wanted to make an impressive look for Anya but, at the same time, not break her character. The designer remembers: “I wondered where she’d have gotten a dress that’s so glamorous. She’s not a woman of means. Most people [at that time] made their own clothes with paper patterns, so I used those as references.” And in the end, the dress looked as if the girl made it for herself.

12. The Matrix (1999)

The costumes in this film not only made it look better, but also conveyed the message. Think about the real-world clothes of the characters. But in the Matrix, they could wear any trendy clothes they wanted.

Trinity had to look like an oil spot — that’s what the directors wanted. She challenges gravity, appears out of nowhere, and disappears fast. Kym Barrett found a great solution — PVC clothes that looked perfect and were pretty cheap.

The clothes are tight but they are not revealing. They highlight the important role of Trinity — she’s not a typical movie girlfriend, she’s a fighter on an important mission.

13. House of Gucci (2021)

In order to create the wardrobe for the flick about one of the most stylish families in the fashion industry, costume designers had to select 400-500 outfits. Of course, some of the most spectacular ones were the looks of Patrizia Reggiani, played by Lady Gaga.

Her eccentric character was outlined not only by bright clothing but also by an abundance of jewelry. Lady Gaga wore huge earrings, and numerous bracelets and chains. A good example is in the scene where Patrizia and her husband are at a ski resort, she is wearing 4 golden necklaces.

Which movie’s outfits have stood out in your eyes and why do you think their costumes were such a success?


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