Welcome to FrockTalk, the web’s only costume-based movie review site. The goal of Frocktalk is to shed light on the magnificent artistry of costume design in motion pictures. Reviews on this site are written by working costume designers in the entertainment industry – people who know, better than anyone, what it takes to make it all happen. The focus of FrockTalk is not to comment on the big flashy costume dramas, but to call attention to the seemingly ordinary costume design work in film that silently and persuasively moves the audience toward understanding the characters. Costume design for motion pictures is an art form that deserves more recognition than it usually gets. Fancy, pretty costumes do not always equal effective, appropriate costumes. The art of the costume is in letting the audience know who the character is, before the actor even has a chance to open his mouth. Read on, and enjoy. ** CAUTION: ALL REVIEWS CONTAIN SPOILERS! **

Tag Archive for 'fashion'

22nd Art of Motion Picture Costume Design Gala at FIDM!

IMG_6667

Man of Steel Superman suit. Costume designers James Acheson and Michael Wilkinson.

Last night was the big opening gala for FIDM’s 22nd annual “Art of Motion Picture Costume Design” exhibition.  Frocktalk contributor Lauren Fonville and I tore it up – chatting with designers and ooh-ing and aah-ing over the many beautiful works of costume art on display. The exhibit showcased costumes from twenty-one films of 2013, as well as last year’s Oscar winner, ‘Anna Karenina’.

Continue reading ’22nd Art of Motion Picture Costume Design Gala at FIDM!’

Spotlight On: Costume Illustrator Phillip Boutte!

Screen Shot 2013-04-17 at 6.25.50 PM

Phillip Boutte is one of the hottest costume illustrators in town.  With a resume that includes box-office behemoths like Inception, Man of Steel, Twilight/Breaking Dawn, and Star Trek, his rise has been meteoric. We sat down to breakfast and ended up talking about everything from new rendering programs to racism in the media.  I really adore Phillip and am so excited to share this interview with you.  Grab a cup of coffee and join us, won’t you?

Continue reading ‘Spotlight On: Costume Illustrator Phillip Boutte!’

HOLLYWOOD COSTUME Coming to Melbourne!

hollywood-costume

Frocktalkers, remember that awesome HOLLYWOOD COSTUME exhibit that Deborah Nadoolman Landis put together at the V & A in London last October? Well, it’s on the move! The show will open at the Australian Centre for the Moving Image in Melbourne on April 24. This is a DO NOT MISS event, people. If you are in Australia or New Zealand (or anywhere else close-by), this exhibit merits a trip, for sure. It’s so exciting. More info HERE!  Enjoy, everyone!

- KMB

Tales from London: the Best Costume Exhibit of ALL TIME!

I’m finally back at home and settled in after a fabulous and unforgettable visit to Europe. I am so grateful to have been able to make this trip. I feel so lucky to have been able to be a part of the Hollywood Costume celebration at the Victoria and Albert museum; I don’t even know where to begin. London, V & A, Deborah Landis, David C. Copley – a million thank yous would never be enough. This exhibit at the V & A marks a new chapter in costume design. We are officially on the map, if you ever missed us before.

Continue reading ‘Tales from London: the Best Costume Exhibit of ALL TIME!’

Adventures in Costuming: Albright Fashion Library!

These Prada shoes.  These shoes.  Come on.

These Prada shoes. These shoes. Come on.

Frocktalkers, I have just returned from New York City, and WOW, do I have a find for you!!! It’s the Albright Fashion Library, and before you start thinking of a musty space filled with old books and magazines, let me tell you: it’s pure fashion. Not a book to be found. This is a place that lends clothing, and not just any clothing – top-of-the-line, first-run designer fashion – and tons of it.

Continue reading ‘Adventures in Costuming: Albright Fashion Library!’

Color Me Beautiful

I was at a Fourth of July party yesterday, when a makeup writer friend of mine and I got into a conversation about the book Color Me Beautiful. Most of you Frocktalkers are probably too young to remember this phenomenon, but using this book, you could determine whether you were a “winter”, “spring”, “summer” or “autumn”, and choose flattering clothing and makeup colors accordingly. My friend was wondering if the premise still held up today, thirty-plus years after the book was first published. It got me thinking…

Continue reading ‘Color Me Beautiful’

RIP, Nolan Miller: 1933 – 2012

Nolan Miller and his Dynasty ladies

Nolan Miller and his Dynasty ladies

Raise your shoulder pads and lower the veils on your hats, Frocktalkers.  This is a big one.  Nolan Miller, costume design icon, has left the building.  Mr. Miller was a driving force behind the use of big ole shoulder pads in the 1980s, thanks in part to his incredible and fantastic work on Dynasty.  The contribution that he made to our cultural environment in this time period can not be underestimated.  His appreciation of the female shape – and the way he decorated it – influenced fashion houses all over the world.  Nolan Miller defined a certain kind of glamour for this era, and I hope that his talent and skill will be appreciated for a long time to come.  Rest in peace, Nolan Miller… and thanks for raising the bar.

NY Times Obit HERE

- KMB

Dark Knight Rises – Costumes as Fashion?

Frocktalker Laura sent me the link to this interesting article from GQ online about the costumes from the newest Batman installation, The Dark Knight Rises.  Kind of interesting… what do you think?  Read the article HERE!

- KMB

WOW – Retailer H & M launches “Girl With the Dragon Tattoo” Line!

Who’d'a thunk it?!?!  Swedish retail giant H & M is moving forward with a fashion line based on the American version of Stieg_Larsson‘s Girl With the Dragon Tattoo.  Odd, given that the novel is from Sweden, written in Swedish, and the first film was made in Sweden with Swedish actors.  Wonder why it takes an American version of this iconically Swedish film to get a huge Swedish retailer to launch a line in America?  Confused yet?  See the full story HERE at Elle.com!

- KMB

Dear Kristin: Where Should I Go? What Should I Study?

Dear Kristin: 

I am a senior in high school and narrowing down my choices of colleges. I did want to study fashion design, and was serious about art colleges, but recently I have taken a great interest in costume design. Do you have any recommendations for colleges or courses of study in college? And if I did go to an art school and studied fashion design, is there any way I could cross over into costuming, such as volunteer work?   Thank you for time!
Sincerely,  Emily I.