Friday, June 10, 2011
Le Divorce: Love is in the Bag
Please do visit Clothes on Film to read my article “Kate Hudson in Le Divorce: Love is in the Bag.” It focuses on the transformation made by Isabel Walker (Kate Hudson) as she travels from Santa Barbara to Paris to help her pregnant sister Roxeanne (Naomi Watts), and then goes from casual California girl to glamorous soignée French mistress to the very foxy Edgar Cosset (Thierry Lhermitte). I had the pleasure of speaking with the film’s costume designer, Carol Ramsey, who gave me a fantastic and fun interview, with wonderful details about designing for Le Divorce and insights about how a Hollywood costume designer really works. Just talking to her made me want to move back to California and apprentice myself to her for a year. What an education that would be.
Kate Hudson as Isabel Walker in Le Divorce wearing a knockout Chloé blouse featuring cutwork lace, sequins and pearls. Photo © Twentieth Century Fox.
Be still my heart. More than one Purse Forum member identified this bag as an Hermès Kelly 28 rigide in Braise crocodile porosus with gold hardware. Such attention to detail is one of the many reasons why I love that site. This bag had a stunt double, an identical knockoff which was used any time the original, on loan from Hermès, had to get banged up. Photo © Twentieth Century Fox.
Isabel buying lingerie at La Perla. This scene always cracks me up since Isabel's French is not so good. The trench is by Chloé (note the arm patch with lions and a champagne glass!) and Ms. Ramsey says the bag, which I deeply love and which she still has in her office, was bought on the streets in Paris. She admits they had a lot of great bags for Le Divorce. Photo © Twentieth Century Fox.
Roxy (Naomi Watts), Chester (Sam Waterston), Isabel (Kate Hudson), and Roger (Thomas Lennon) walk along the Seine in Le Divorce. Photo © Twentieth Century Fox.
I know it wasn’t the best-received movie, but I actually like Le Divorce, partly because I’ve read the novel by Diane Johnson three times, partly because I think Kate Hudson was so good in it (as were the others), but also because the clothes on all the characters are gorgeous and the places where James Ivory shot the film in Paris make it feel like a little French vacation whenever I watch it.
Kate is carrying an Hermès Birkin, not a Kelly, in this poster.
Clothes on Film creator Chris Laverty has put together a fantastic source for fans of film costume design. It’s impossible for me not to love a site that will narrow in on, say, the Edith Head-designed coral and white driving ensemble worn by Grace Kelly in the movie To Catch a Thief, parsing its historical references as well as what it says about her character, Frances. That kind of laser-like focus always gets my admiration so not only am I a big fan of Clothes on Film, I am very excited to contribute an article to it.