Saturday, April 16, 2011

Elizabeathan Designs with a Zip of a Twist!

I was reading the papers this morning with my parentals during my trip home to Cronulla. It's a tradition in our family, as we're all big paper buffs. We each have our own sections - Dad has business and drive, Mom has the real estate and cooking, and I have all of the arts section. Today in the Sydney Morning Herald was an amazing article on Helen Mirren, and her philosophy of acting and her new role playins Prospera (instead of Prospero, a male part) in the up and coming version of The Tempest. But what was more important to me was the photo that accompanied the article. It was a screen shot from The Tempest, all the characters dolled up in the primarily Elizabeathan style (although quite spanish as it's set in the Spanish Islands, but the same period in history) that is common to Shakespeare, however, all of the costumes were made out of zippers! Yes! Zippers! How cool is that? The new fad in DIY Fashion has now hit motion pictures and changed the way we look at historical costumes.

The costume designer is Sandy Powell, and obviously worked really closely with production designer Mark Friedberg, as the whole movie is set in really dark tones. Director Julie Taymor allowed full reign and freedom for the designs, as inspiration was taken from many sources: paintings by historical painter Velazquez, fashion house Balmain, Marc Jacobs and DIY fashion bloggers around the globe. The metal zippers represent the underlying violence of the Spanish Conquistadors. 

Check out this article from Vogue for more information on the different costumes for the characters. I think this is one of the first times in history that a historical movie has been flipped on it's back with inspiration from modern fashion to such an extent. This makes it art - not just costume.

Photo from: Cinematic Passions

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