The Story Behind Blonde’s “Dramatic” Fashion Climax

What was your favorite costume in the film and why?

It’s become harder to decide the more I live with the film! We made Blonde in 2019 and now every costume has its own special place in my memory and experience. It was a really hard film to make. We had so little time and to see it on the screen now is very satisfying! The white pleated dress that William Travilla originally designed in Seven Year Itch has this incredible slow-motion shot that really shows off all of our hard work.

That dress had been re-created so many times and we’ve all seen it walking down Hollywood Boulevard, at Halloween parties, and printed on mugs—that dress blowing up in the subway wind is everywhere! The dress’s modern incarnations have gotten a little flimsy and easy and not particularly special. The incredible Jose Bello who used to be at Western Costume was the mastermind that laid out the pleating pattern and unraveled all the things that weren’t right with all these re-creations. I really wanted the skirt to be extra generous so it would have a dramatic luxurious liquid volume that could overtake Ana when the wind blew!

I still can’t believe the re-creation for Some Like It Hot! When you see the stills side by side our version and the original! It felt like that as we were shooting—Andrew always had the original image right next to the monitor. I love that nude souffle and silk chiffon beaded dress that Orry-Kelly originally designed. Did you know the dress has a little cut-out red heart on the rear? And yes it’s included! Rory and his team at Bill Hargate did a lovely job on this one. I had padding put in this dress to give Ana’s figure more weight. It was the only time I padded her.

Lydia Jakubowski was our incredible full-time cutter fitter who made so many things including her wedding dress and the everyday uniforms of Capri pants-those outfits are so special too. Sometimes it’s the simple things that do so much of the emotional heavy lifting.

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