The '50s Films That Every Fashion Girl Should Watch
In one of the most iconic fashion films of all time, Audrey Hepburn stars as Jo Stockton, a shy bookstore employee who is transformed into the latest It model after being discovered by fashion photographer Dick Avery (based on fashion photographer Richard Avedon), played by Fred Astaire. With the help of major fashion editor Maggie Prescott—whose character was based off ofBAZAAR's own Diana Vreeland—famously friends with Avedon in real life—Jo becomes fashion's newest darling through a series of gorgeous photo shoots staged throughout Paris. With the help of the legendary Edith Head as costume designer and an array of breathtaking Givenchy gowns,Funny Faceis a fashion show in itself.
2)To Catch a Thief, 1955
Hitchcock's most memorable blonde, Grace Kelly, stars alongside Cary Grant in this love story thiller. With the costume design also helmed by Edith Head,To Catch a Thiefnot only defines Hitchcock's quintessential heroine (blonde curls, a bold red lip and Dior's New Look silhouette), it also captures the elegant style of the '50s—which fashion still continues to reference to this day.
3)Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, 1953
The movie that calls itself, 'the most glamorous musical of all time,'Gentlemen Prefer Blondesfeatures an array of eye-catching outfits worn by Marilyn Monroe and Jane Russell, who star as showgirls in search of rich husbands. From that iconic pink gown in the "Diamonds are a Girl's Best Friend" musical number to the showgirls' extravagant costumes, this film is a must-see for the fashion obsessed.
In one of her first films, Audrey Hepburn stars as Sabrina—the quiet girl next door who catches the attention of two wealthy brothers after evolving into a chic young woman while studying abroad in Paris. The film's standout gown moments (which include Sabrina dancing dreamily around a tennis court in the dark, as one does) began the iconic designer-celebrity relationship between Hubert de Givenchy and Hepburn, a fashion pairing that lasted through the rest of the actress's life.
5)All About Eve, 1950
Although not directly related to fashion or the fashion industry,All About Evecould be considered the early version ofThe Devil Wears Prada. Highlighting female competitiveness (especially in the workplace), the film follows Eve Harrington (Anne Baxter), a young and aspiring actress who manipulates Broadway superstar Margo Channing (Bette Davis) to taking her under her wing. In no time, Eve manages to steal Margo's spotlight, career and friends. This catty film is still referenced in both pop culture and fashion to this day.
6)Rebel Without A Cause, 1955
Consider this your "borrowed from the boys" inspiration:Rebel Without A Causeis definitely not a fashion film, but the fashioninthe film is a must-see. James Dean set the fashion tone for rebellious teenage youth of the 1950s in blue jeans, a white t-shirt and a bold red leather jacket.
7)And God Created Woman, 1956
In what launched bombshell Brigitte Bardot's career, French filmAnd God Created Womanturned the French actress into an overnight sex symbol. Bardot plays Juliette, an 18-year-old who stirs drama as she captures the attention of many different men. The film ends with the line "That girl was made to destroy men," sealing the sultry status Bardot became known for.
8)High Society, 1956
High Society, Grace Kelly's final acting role before becoming Princess of Monaco, features Bing Crosby and Frank Sinatra alongside the leading lady. The musical follows Kelly's fashion-loving socialite as she's pursued by three different suitors. With costume design by Helen Rose, Kelly wears an array of beautiful gowns accessorized with her own engagement ring from Prince Rainier III. The movie perfectly captures the elegance and ladylike silhouettes that defined the decade.
9)Designing Woman, 1957
Lauren Bacall and Gregory Peck star as a fashion designer and sports writer who marry quickly after falling in love while on vacation. Bacall's Marilla stuns her husband with an endless supply of designer clothes: "This was just the first in the series of wardrobe changes, which never failed to amaze me. Believe me, this kid changed her clothes nine times a day!" Gregory Peck's character exclaims. The two opposites struggle in their new marriage in this romantic comedy.
10)Rear Window, 1954
Regarded as one of Hitchcock's greatest films,Rear Windowstars Grace Kelly as Lisa Fremont, a fashion editor with a beautiful wardrobe created by costume designer Edith Head. Fremont's socialite character never wears the same outfit twice and loves a "dress that's fresh from a Paris plane" in the thriller.
Video: Top 10 Movie Wardrobes of All Time
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