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Clothes on film: The Great Gatsby


As this week's issue is dedicated to film and fashion, we've explored the genre further and looked at how the iconic looks on screen were created. Here, Chris Laverty who writes the fashion and film blog, Clothes on Film discusses the vest and wide leg trousers combo as worn by golfer Jordan Baker in 2013's The Great Gatsby.

"With the possible exception of The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (due out November), The Great Gatsby is still the cinematic sartorial event of the year. Costume designer Catherine Martin employed the services of Miuccia Prada to re-work forty outfits from recent Prada and Miu Miu collections for dancers and cast.

While it was easy to get enticed by the sheer volume of fringing and feathers on screen, even more exciting than anything Carey Mulligan wore as Daisy Buchanan were Elizabeth Debicki’s flapper ensembles as Jordan Baker. One ensemble in particular, a sleeveless gold silk vest with vertical bias piping and beige wide leg trousers, stood out as the closest any costume came to being ‘roaring twenties’ in the whole film.

Daisy is a romantic throwback, someone who longs to be pampered. Her clothes bear little resemblance to the burgeoning boyish style of 1922. La Garçonne (which can translate to ‘the flapper’) was a look intended to flatten the bust and hips. Post World War I, women were liberated. They wanted everything that men had and believed to achieve this they needed to remove any obvious trace of femininity. Daisy lives to fulfill her traditional gender role, but Jordan makes her own way in the world as a professional sportswoman.

The beige pants Jordan wears, specially made for the film, are the most significant part of her outfit. These are ‘beach pyjamas’, basically a female version of ‘Oxford bags’, a wide leg trouser originally designed to be slipped over rowing attire by male students at university. Chanel pioneered beach pyjamas during the twenties, herself a proponent of comfortable and, at the time, radical women’s clothing. Jordan is the most relatable Gatsby character today. Her clothes reflect a desire to escape gender stereotyping, yet still embrace the effeminacy of her sex. She is the quintessential flapper."

To see more, head to clothesonfilm.com



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