Blithe Spirit, 1945

“That is the remark of a pompous ass!”

So, there’s this movie channel in my cable bundle that runs old movies all the time. I really only like to watch it because I like to watch the worst commercial ever made, for HotelPlanner.com, and as far as I know, this is the only channel that airs that commercial. So, while admiring this Clio shoo-in, I saw that the channel was prepping to run Blithe Spirit, which I’d never heard of. But I’m a huge Noel Coward fan (spoken by a true high school drama nerd), and it looked like one of the main characters was in whiteface, so I felt compelled to tune in. Actually, I cheated and got it Instant Access through Netflix and I was a happy camper! This is a fantastically fun movie, and I’ve decided that I want to be a bicycle-riding medium when I grow up. Now, for the clothes… First up- Ruth, the current wife:

Fabulous dress for a dinner party

This is  a gorgeous knit dress with some gathering at the neckline beneath the bedazzledness that wraps all the way over her shoulder. The high waist is really flattering, and the back is cut into a V right where her tramp stamp surely is. Under the V there’s some great pleating that fans out through the tail.

The ghost of the Statue of Liberty

The character that I thought was in white-face was in fact the color of the Statue of Liberty. She is Elvira (pronounced El-VEER-a), the ghost of the first wife. She wore this same dress- more likely a robe- throughout, so I assume she died while wearing it. The draping is beautiful, and I love that waistline.

The best of Ruth

So, said high school drama nerd used to get made fun of by her theatrical peers because I tended to be tight (or uptight) with my posture- my hands were stiff because I never knew what to do with them. I fear this actress had a similar problem, though her facial expressions clearly had some variety. So, for the clothes- both of the two lower dresses are high-waisted v-neck wrap bodices with ridiculous shoulder structure. I’m fairly certain that the red number is a robe, and it has these very cute darker red velvet bows at the shoulder. The other number is a dress with a  lavender bodice and an electric blue skirt- which is a combo I adore, and will probably incorporate into my wardrobe soon. The pink thing at the top is a cute structured dress that makes me think of Safari Barbie- I love the tailoring, the notched color, and those pockets! The dress had a dropped waist ending in a midi-length pleated skirt.  

Watch this movie for some authentic mid-century trends that show up on runways again and again- then gorge yourself on the websites full of vintage patterns. Not that I do that myself…

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