Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Design Inspiration: The Costumes of "Pan Am"

Costume designer Ane Crabtree is responsible for the amazing pieces you see on ABC's "Pan Am," which is set in 1963.  Below are some excerpts from an interview she did with Glamour magazine's blog, where she shares her inspiration for the stunning '60s looks.  I like that she notes that she is inspired by what's happening in fashion now, and that not everything she designs is influenced by that particular time period.

Crabtree also admits to never having watched "Mad Men," but only because she doesn't watch TV.  She says of "Mad Men" designer Janie Bryant: "I've known her for a thousand years and I think shes a gem and she's brilliant at what she does. The thing is, I'm using the same reference points, like Grace Kelly from a Hitchcock film. Other than that, I just think hmmm, that show has had a heck of a lot of success, I hope ours does too!"

STF: Are you creating most of the pieces we see from scratch, or do you do a ton of vintage shopping?
AC: I think every designer dreams of being able to make everything. It's certainly my wish for the show. But yes, we do have a load of vintage as well, and we constantly pluck from this giant pile.

STF: Where does most of it come from?
AC: From eBay, from costume houses, and best of all, from grandmothers. There are people who work on the show who have donated family items, who say 'here, this was my grandmother's, she was so stylish and I really want you guys to have it.' So there's real history behind the pieces. We've been amassing things per character.

STF: The 60s are having a moment in fashion again--the whole return to ladylike style and fuller skirts and a more polished look. Do you let it influence what you do on set, or are you strict in adhering to historical accuracy?
AC: I like to keep the integrity of using real pieces, or things that are taken from real pieces or re-done. I really do try to stay within the period--that's my goal and my intent. Although I'm very inspired by whats happening right now, especially with labels like Pringle of Scotland or Burberry or Jil Sander--all of the collections that just came out are so inspiring. I think you have to stay focused for sure and true to the period, but you have to open your blinders to the side and say 'life influences art.' There are so many parallels in our script with the past and what's happening right now, that I like to keep an open eye to fashion and style.
Read the full interview here.

They even recently promoted the show with a bus shelter installation in Hollywood, captured by the wonderful blog, Hollywood Movie Costumes and Props.

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