Different colours may come and go, but black and white are the ones that stand the test of time. Last year, Marsala – a deep, rich, wine red – was touted to be THE colour to watch out for. In 2014, Teal was heralded as the colour of the year. Every year, we see some new colour steal the fashion limelight. But working in the background, diligently making their mark on the fashion world are the ever reliable black and white. Hollywood, through the years, has seen its share of iconic black and white outfits. From a simple black LBD, a white evening gown, to a combination of black and white coming together to create magic, these two colours have managed to create a niche for themselves, prompting us to write a piece about them.
Audrey Hepburn’s LBD in Breakfast At Tiffany’s
Do a google search on Audrey Hepburn’s little black dress, the one that she wore in the opening scenes of Breakfast At Tiffany’s, and you’re bound to come across numerous fashion blogs and sites gushing about the dress and how it has inspired generations of fashionistas. The Givenchy dress made celluloid history, paired with a multi-stranded pearl choker, opera gloves, and the long cigarette holder. With Givenchy’s genius, Audrey made the look a part of her persona.
Marilyn Monroe’s White Halter-Neck Dress in The Seven Year Itch
Of course we’ve got to mention Marilyn Monroe’s white dress in The Seven Year Itch. In an unforgettable moment in film history, Monroe tries to tame the skirt as it blows in the wind. Some fashion critics have argued that it wasn’t so much the dress as the fact that Monroe was wearing it, and doing what she did. Well, be that as it may, that dress is one of the most popular outfits of all time and has been re-created so many times over the years.
Julianne Moore’s Black and White Number in A Single Man
With Tom Ford—the fashion designer—as the director, there was never any doubt that the costumes in the movie, A single Man, were going to be fantastic. Arianne Phillips, a Hollywood stylist, weaved her magic and created an iconic monochrome outfit for Julianne Moore. Everything from the dress’ classic cut to the gold jewelry paired with it made it a standout piece. There was no other option but to fall in love with it.
Sharon Stone’s Little White Dress in Basic Instinct
In Basic Instinct, Sharon Stone played the role of a wealthy heiress and novelist who used her sexuality to unnerve and seduce those who dared to cross her path. But curiously enough, instead of wearing bold colours that were typical of the femme fatale role during that time, Sharon Stone wore a lot of pastels in the movie. All thanks to costume designer Ellen Mirojnick, who wanted the costumes in the movie to have a timeless, classic quality to them. Sharon Stone’s LWD in the interrogation scene is proof that she managed to do just that.
Madonna’s Black Outfit in Desperately Seeking Susan
Few people can claim to have influenced an entire generation with their fashion style. Madonna did just that. Her thrift-store look in the movie Desperately Seeking Susan became the signature look of the 80s. Her whacky personal style is what convinced impressed the director and made him cast her for the role of Susan. Our favourite look is her all black ensemble with bits of colour in it. Everything from the gold trimming on the jacket to the white lace gloves, long necklaces, and the big, black bow on her head came together to create a fashion statement that was ALL Madonna.
Alicia Silverstone’s White Calvin Klein Dress in Clueless
A lot has been said about Cher’s plaid outfit in Clueless. So we thought we’d take a look at the next most popular outfit in the movie, and voila! Cher’s teeny tiny white dress came out the winner. Here’s the dialogue that happens when Cher walks in wearing that dress:
“Cher, what the hell are you wearing?”
“Well, go put something over it!’’
‘’Duh, I was just going to!’’
Annnnd… she walks in wearing a see-through trench on top of it. Ha! When Calvin Klein announced in 2010 that they were re-creating the dress, people went crazy. It was priced at $915 and sold well. Not surprising when you consider the loyal fan base the movie has managed to accumulate over the years.
There are so many others. From the Great Gatsby to Desire to Gilda, there is a long list of movies in which a black or white outfit worn by the protagonist managed to capture our hearts. We’ve only listed six of the most popular ones here.