Eight Favorite 1940s Movies for Fashion

I’m all inspired by 1940s fashion right now! I thought, to share inspiration, I’d pass on some of my top favorite 1940s movies for fashion and costume design.

In no particular order:

#1- Cover Girl(1944).  Rita Hayworth, Gene Kelly.  Costume Design by Travis Banton, Muriel King, and Gwen Wakeling

Image source: Nancy Girl Blog– Go to the post for great screen shots of this film.

#2- Pin Up Girl (1944)– Betty Grable, Martha Raye.  Costume Design by René Hubert.

Image Source: Andi B. Goode on retroaesthetics on Livejournal.  Check out the link for more great screen caps.

#3- The Philadelphia Story (1940)- Katherine Hepburn, Cary Grant, James Stewart.  Gowns by Gilbert Adrian.

Image Source: Vili Flik Blog.

#4- State Fair (1945)- Jeanne Crain, Dana Andrews.  Costume Design: René Hubert.

Image source: Ruffles & Whiskers blog.

#5- Casablanca (1943)– Ingrid Bergman, Humphrey Bogart.  Costume Design: Gowns by Orry-Kelly.

Image Source: Fashionable Forties. Check out the blog post for more great images.

#6- Now, Voyager (1942).  Bette Davis, Paul Henreid, Claude Rains.  Costume Design: Edith Head.

Image source: She’s in Vogue blog. Check out the link for more images.

#7- Ball of Fire (1941)– Barbara Stanwyk, Gary Cooper.  Costume Design by Edith Head.

Image Source: Screwball Cinema Blog.

#8- The Lady Eve (1941)– Barbara Stanwyck, Henry Fonda.  Costume Design by Edith Head.

Image Source: Sergio Leone and the Infield Fly Rule

What are your favorite 1940s films for fashion?

15 Comments on Eight Favorite 1940s Movies for Fashion

  1. Kate
    June 19, 2012 at 11:53 am (4 years ago)

    I haven’t seen lots of these!

    • Lauren
      June 20, 2012 at 2:37 pm (4 years ago)

      Go check them out! They’re worth it :)

  2. Stephanie
    June 19, 2012 at 12:50 pm (4 years ago)

    I love State Fair! It’s my favorite movie for 40s fashions. :)

    • Lauren
      June 20, 2012 at 2:37 pm (4 years ago)

      State Fair for the win! More ruffles, more rick rack, and more color! :)

  3. Heide at Apron History
    June 19, 2012 at 12:54 pm (4 years ago)

    Ohhh! State Fair is one of my favorites! I love how bright and colorful the clothes are. Not to mention the great music and story!
    The later Thin Man movies have wonderful costume too. Who is more elegant then Myrna Loy?! I love the scenes in “The Shawow of the Thin Man” where Myrna Loy is trying to keep her huge hat perched on her head while investigating the murder with William Powell.

    I think a 40s playsuit is on my list for this year too. I just to to get it done before the summer is over!

    • Lauren
      June 20, 2012 at 2:34 pm (4 years ago)

      Ooh! Good call! Myrna Loy always looked amazing in those films, and her hats are fab!

  4. LadyD
    June 20, 2012 at 1:21 am (4 years ago)

    Well for everyday UK fashion I’d say ‘green for danger’ from 1946 based on a 1944 book. Great film too. And any of the ealing films like ‘passport to pimlico’ or ‘Went the day well?’.
    When it comes to US 40’s fashion You never were lovelier’ & ‘blue skies’.

    • Lauren
      June 20, 2012 at 2:35 pm (4 years ago)

      I’ll have to watch those! Thanks for the recommendation.
      Ooh… yes on “You Were Never Lovlier”!

  5. wacky tacky
    June 20, 2012 at 8:25 am (4 years ago)

    Wowee!!! I’m feeling the same kind of inspiration right now. You know “State Fair” is my favorite, but I definitely have “Cover Girl,” “Pin-Up Girl,” and “Now Voyager” on the list as well. “DuBarry was a Lady” with Lucille Ball has some KILLER clothes and hats. Gene Tierney’s clothes in “Leave Her to Heaven” are pretty magnificent too!!!

    • Lauren
      June 20, 2012 at 2:36 pm (4 years ago)

      YES! I almost added “Du Barry was a Lady” but got lazy by about movie #7 ;) Haha. Lucy had some amazing clothes in that one!

  6. Tammi
    June 20, 2012 at 1:29 pm (4 years ago)

    I love the dresses in State Fair though most of them are wildly inappropriate for me. I love Barbara’s outfits in the Lady Eve and I just plan love that movie. I am trying to impress upon my friends and family the brilliance of that film but they just don’t get it. And now I’ll be humming Drum Boogie for weeks. (:

    • Lauren
      June 20, 2012 at 2:36 pm (4 years ago)

      The Lady Eve is one of the best movies EVER! :)

  7. Susie
    June 21, 2012 at 7:44 pm (4 years ago)

    Oh you have some wonderful films on here. There used to be a Bar in Burbank called the Now Voyager – near Warner Bros studios – that Bette supposedly used to slip into the back for a cocktail, or six! I also adore Gilda (more Rita) That black dress in the “Put the Blame on Mame” number kills me. I would also like to nominate every last stitch in Moon Over Miami 1941 starring Betty Grable. Friends, she wore this white dress with butterflies all over it http://s3.amazonaws.com/auteurs_production/images/film/moon-over-miami/w448/moon-over-miami.jpg?1299209901 (best photo I could find) I tried to make this for myself in high school and failed. Oh well. It is my holy grail.

  8. Casey
    June 24, 2012 at 5:37 am (4 years ago)

    Seriously lady: we could be twins with our favorite 40s movie picks! hehe. I think the only one I haven’t really seen in full is State Fair (I’m not much of a musicals girl… :/). But I need to because every time I see a screen capture the clothes look so cute!

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