On Christmas mornings past, it has been tradition in my family to rise and shine, dig into our stockings stuffed with goodies, fill up with a mouth watering breakfast, open the rest of our gifts delivered by dear ole’ Santa, and finally, watch our favorite Christmas film. This year, since I will be in Seattle as you read this and far from normal tradition, I made sure to watch my favorite Christmas feature early.
While there are many holiday flicks out there to choose from, I’ve found over the years my favorite Christmas movie is one that is filled with hours of humor, countless song and dance scenes, and an endless array of stunning costume changes. Do you know which one I’m referring to? Can you guess which film I’m talking about yet? Well, I’ll give you another hint: it’s the one with the “dynamite act” that is suppose to take place on the “snow, snow, SNOWY” hills of Vermont. Yep, I’m talking about the 1954 classic White Christmas featuring Bing Crosby, Rosemary Clooney, Danny Kaye, and Vera Ellen.
Growing up, I remember be fascinated watching Rosemary Clooney perform the Mr. Bones skit. Not only was her voice mesmerizing, but I couldn’t take my eyes off her black sequined, strapless dress that was flared at the bottom and had the beautiful red tulle added to the back of her dress. Immediately following, Mr. Bones, was Vera Ellen’s, Mandy, where she emerged, with legs that seemed to stretch from her neck to the floor where they met her gorgeous strappy stilettos. I’m pretty sure after watching Mandy I wanted to become a singing/dancing actress and practiced my kicks and twirls over and over again in my bedroom when no one was around.
You don’t have to be dreaming of a while Christmas to love the 1950’s costumes the cast got to wear during filming. Funny enough, a few trends that were big within this last year and some of which are still popular now, were all combined into one look in White Christmas. It might not come to you right away but if you watch the film, you’ll be sure to catch what I’m referring to. Skip ahead in your minds to the Sisters scene where Rosemary and Vera are singing and dancing about being devoted, well…sisters. Not the Sisters scene where Bing and Danny do the same thing in their garters and sparkly, turquoise butterfly headbands. Remember the girl’s outfits? They were wearing long sleeve lace tops, mid length skirts, and their outfits were entirely in turquoise!
Lace is a trend that has gained tons of popularity this fall and is still going strong throughout the holiday season and into spring. The best way to wear lace is subtly, not giving away too much. Retro lovers went wild when midi-length skirts and dresses became a huge contender in the hem match last spring and throughout last summer. It added an entirely new spin on an old look. And lastly, monochromatic appeal reached a peak this past spring and carried strong into fall. I think most people are afraid of trying this look because it is so bold and can be difficult to put together; however, I’m a huge fan of monochromatic themes and commend those for trying it.
Let’s not forget about the menswear and army inspiration shown in Gee! I wish I was back in the army scene. The girls sported masculine cut shapes while the boys wore classic army colors. Not to mention the exceptional suits and tailored shirts the men wore throughout the film.
I’d like to believe the world would be a better place if men still dressed sharply every day and women still insisted on wearing dresses that cover more than not. In the words of Danny Kaye, “When what’s left of you gets around to what’s left to be gotten, what’s left to be gotten won’t be worth getting, whatever it is you’ve got left,” so I suggest as we enter into 2012, that we take a few tips from 1954 on fashion, mannerisms, and overall beauty to make sure that we’re worthy of getting everything we desire in the upcoming year.
Enjoy a few of my favorite scenes and songs from White Christmas 🙂 Merry Christmas!