Why I loved The Great Gatsby’s Costumes – Erica Para

20's Costumes

Gatsby Costumes

When I heard that Director Baz Luhrmann was adapting the F. Scott Fitzgerald 1925 novel The Great Gastby, I was completely excited about it.  He’s one of those directors that can take any story and turn it into a visual party of excessive beauty. So after seeing Romeo and Juliet, Australia and Moulin Rouge my expectations where very high, and he did not disappointed me.

costumeI’ve heard about the book many times but I’ve never had the chance to read it. Some people say the movie is not completely accurate to the book but, despite that, I enjoyed every moment of it and I have to admit it was due to the fact that that Leonardo DiCaprio was in it, the costumes seemed to be astonishing and that Beyonce, Lana del Rey, Florence Welch among others were part of the soundtrack of the movie. Yes, modern music in a 1920s film. gatsby

Two time Oscar-winning Costume designer and wife of the director, Catherine Martin has designed some of the most amazing and powerful costumes I have seen including the marvellous Moulin Rouge’s.

For this movie she collaborated with Miuccia Prada, Tiffany and Co. and Brooks Brothers among others, for the creation of the costumes and accessories. The final results are an out of this world extravaganza of colors, shapes and magnificence on screen that evokes all the glitz and glamour of the Roaring Twenties with the bling style and art deco inspiration. What’s not to love about this?!

The collaboration of Prada includes furs, dresses and shoes adapted for the movie for different characters, especially for Daisy Buchanan (played by Carey Mulligan) directly from the archives of Prada and Miu Miu. High fashion at its finest!

TIFFANY's GATSBY copyTiffany and Co. helped with the creation of the fantastic headpieces and jewellery used in the movie, including that beautiful headpiece Daisy wears at Gatsby’s party made in platinum with pearls and round diamonds!

The costumes are not the typical 1920s costumes we are used to see and that was exciting. They’re colourful, bright, glamorous and almost surreal and it’s impossible to keep your eyes off of them. They are true to the period but modern at the same time.   Costumes define every character, they tell a story. The fragility of Daisy is presented in delicate pastels, the lavishing red of Myrtle’s dresses shown an audacious woman, Tom Buchannan’s upper class distinction is presented in clean, perfectly tailored dark suits and the mysterious newly rich Jay Gatsby is exposed in a perfect masculine glamour.

gatsby costumes

The magnificence of an era full of changes, freedommyrtle and opulence are fully represented with all those fashion clichés we love about the 20’s: the fabulous hairstyles, the makeup, the feathered headpieces, the pearls, the cloche hats, the jewellery, the fringes, the ties and suits, the cars! It’s all there and much more.

I love how the costumes helped recreate an era, it made me love or despise the different characters and it reminded me of the beauty of the 1920s with its glamour, fabulous fashion and never ending promise of fun. Even thought you might not like the movie, the costumes stay in your head and you can’t help wanting to be part of the 20s at least for a night.