I’m bringing back my series of Summer Style inspirations this year. It’s still in the 40s and raining here in Boston, but what better time to get excited about the warmer weeks ahead? To kick of this year’s batch is Daria, played by Daria Halprin in the 1970 indie Zabriskie Point. Although a box office flop, the film has earned cult status for its portrayal of late 60s counterculture and its wicked soundtrack of Pink Floyd and Jerry Garcia. Daria’s wardrobe in the film is minimal, but so good. Sometimes a simple tank dress is all you need.
Sophia Loren is a knockout in every one of her films, but I love her pared down beauty in the Western film Land of the Lost. As Dita, the local lady of pleasure in Timbuktu, her wardrobe is filled with feminine and flattering dresses but are still airy and appropriate for the tropical climate. She becomes attracted to the spiritual nature of a visiting explorer and follows him and his American guide (played by John Wayne) into the Sahara desert in search of hidden treasure. Even after her dresses get soiled by the cruel desert, she still looks stunning. Accompanied with incredible ethnic jewelry of silver necklaces, ivory bangles, and gold hoop earrings, Dita the epitome of style for those hot summer days – in the desert or by the ocean.
Jean Seberg is undoubtedly a style icon. Photos of her will always hold a prominent place in style inspiration boards. As Cecile in Bounjour Tristesse, Seberg is a young girl who has the luxury of living in the French Riviera with her wealthy playboy father. She sports a very chic short hair cut, tiny shorts, colorful linens, and loose chambray shirts (nonchalantly knotted at the waist). Her wardrobe is a lovely reflection of the stunning landscape that surrounds her with rich blues, tangerines, lush greens, and vibrant reds. Cecile leads a very undisciplined life with her father until an old flame of his returns (played by the always sophisticated Deborah Kerr). Cecile panics that she will lose the free and easy going lifestyle she and her father had made for themselves. The film is a beautiful cinematic journey of that gorgeous part of the world, but ends quite sadly – the rakish father and his spiteful daughter drive the moral girlfriend to suicide.
Third in the series of summer style is Lucy Harmon, played by the lovely Liv Tyler, in Stealing Beauty. It’s a cult coming of age tale set in the rolling hills of Tuscany. I love the simplicity of Tyler’s wardrobe for this film. It’s obvious that for her summer trip to Italy the character Lucy had just stuffed a duffel bag with a few key items. Her pieces include breezy floral minis, linen tops, fabric Maryjane flats (I had like 20 pairs of these as a teen), and white tennis shoes – essentials for the hottest days in summer. It’s a paired down 90’s look that is effortless yet cool.
Out of Africa is one of my all time favorite movies. The scenery, the story, and the characters make for a compelling film (also check out the book, great read). Meryl Streep is amazing as Dutch baroness Karen Blixen. Her wardrobe is one of my favorites from cinema. When Karen first arrives in Kenya, her wardrobe is incredibly formal and feminine. But once she starts to feel at home on her farm, she adopts a more practical tomboy style of safari shirts, linen hunting jackets, wide brimmed straw hats, and breezy white blouses. I love every bit of it.