Audrey wearing Givenchy’s famous little black dress in Breakfast at Tiffany’s is irrefutably an iconic fashion moment caught on film, but it stops just shy of number one on my personal top-10 list of film fashion looks. Find out if your favorite moments made my list and maybe discover a new film-in-fashion inspiration. —Rachel Chambers
10. CINDERELLA’S BALL GOWN FROM CINDERELLA (1950)
Cinderella may have a leg up on the other ladies in this list because she’s animated and can fit into any dress with sweep of a paintbrush, but what little girl didn’t dream of wearing that powder blue bustle gown? Custom-made for Cindy by a busy workshop of furry little rodent couturiers, the dress managed to make the servant girl look like a princess and helped her steal Prince Charming’s heart. Photo: Walt Disney Pictures
9. MICHELLE PFEIFFER’S LEATHER CATSUIT IN BATMAN RETURNS (1992)
As Selina Kyle in Batman Returns, Michelle Pfeiffer makes an inarguable case for homemade clothes when she follows her feline intuition and crafts her alter-eo uniform. It may not be practical to wear skintight patent leather everyday, but a little bit goes a long way. Pfeiffer’s leather-encased Catwoman created a look that no one (not even fellow über-hottie Halle Berry) could top. Photo: Warner Bros. Pictures
8. AUDREY HEPBURN’S WHITE GIVENCHY GOWN FROM SABRINA (1954)
The first collaboration between Hubert de Givenchy and his muse Audrey Hepburn resulted in one fabulous party frock! The dress was a simple column with a bouffant attached skirt that introduced Sabrina to Long Island society, and introduced what would become the “Audrey Hepburn look” to the world. Photo: Paramount Pictures
7. JANE FONDA’S FUTURISTIC FETISH-WEAR FROM BARBARELLA (1968)
When I discovered this “41st-century” sex romp in high school, I was completely blown away by how freakin’ amazing Jane Fonda looked in barely there leotards and bodysuits that should have looked ridiculous, but instead just looked simply fab. The Paco Rabanne-designed outfits make sense in a future that was originally based on a comic book and was heavily influenced by the sexual revolution. My favorite was the “subtle” peek-a-boo from the plastic cutouts of this number. Photo: David Hurn
6. MARILYN MONROE’S WHITE DRESS IN THE SEVEN YEAR ITCH (1955)
The dress that Travilla designed for Marilyn Monroe in The Seven Year Itch was not, in and of itself, the sexiest number seen in the film (most of the rest of her wardrobe looks practically painted on). But coupled with the star’s giddy exhibitionism and the only panty-flash I would ever deem “classic,” the white summer dress is forever associated with pure sex appeal. Photo: Sam Shaw
5. FAYE DUNAWAY ALL THROUGH NETWORK (1976)
Faye Dunaway usually makes top-fashion lists for the midi-skirts and berets she wore in Bonnie and Clyde, but I much prefer legendary costumer Theoni V. Aldredge’s take on a 1970s businesswoman for Dunaway’s TV executive Diana Christensen in Network. The film was released just a year before Diane Keaton made menswear famous in Annie Hall, and Dunaway also worked a menswear feel into her wide-legged pants matched with blousy tops and scarves. Unlike Keaton’s quirky take, Dunaway was all business—and even a little scary. Photo: Warner Bros. Entertainment
4. JULIA ROBERTS’ POLKA-DOT DRESS IN PRETTY WOMAN (1990)
Most people remember the red gown that Richard Gere’s character gives Julia to wear to the opera, but Vivian’s own choice (paid for with his money, of course) for the staid polo match has fared the passage of time better. Why? Because polka-dots are always in style! And to fully separate her look from her not-quite-forgotten hooker style, Vivian goes full-on lady-like and throws in a coordinated hat, bag and set of white kid gloves.
3. SEAN YOUNG’S SKIRT SUIT FROM BLADE RUNNER (1982)
Blade Runner seemingly borrowed from every generation before it—and ones still to come—when it came to the characters’ styling, but Sean Young’s first appearance as Rachel is straight out of the 1940s film noir. Her boxy shoulders and rigid tailoring help to set the tone of the film’s austere future. Do androids dream of wartime fashions?
2. AUDREY HEPBURN’S BLACK GIVENCHY SHEATH FROM BREAKFAST AT TIFFANY’S (1961)
Still one of the best LBDs around. Read more about it—including what made Givenchy’s designs drape and hang so perfectly on Audrey’s slim figure—in Cinemode.
1. MARILYN MONROE’S PINK DRESS IN NIAGARA (1953)
Poor Marilyn, all the other couples at the Niagara Falls getaway have assumed she’s a tart, or worse, a femme fatale. Well, what better way to prove them wrong than by showing up at the party in a skintight pink dress with a cutout right between your breasts? Oh, that’s right, Marilyn didn’t care what they thought and brought out this sassy number just to prove it, making it my hands-down favorite fashion moment in cinema. Photo: 20th Century Fox —Rachel Chambers
Cinemode is OTDIF’s ongoing compilation of the world’s most stylish films, a must-see list for fans of fashion. From Klute to Breakfast at Tiffany’s to Shaft, some of the greatest style inspiration comes from the characters and costumes in film. Bookmark Cinemode and check back often to read the growing list. The reviews, written with an eye specifically toward fashion, are added to On This Day In Fashion on the anniversary of the film’s release date.