This week, fashion editor Bernadette Morra and stylist Derick Chetty discussed the fashion film The Devil Wears Prada. Seen the movie? Tell us what you thought. And join us again on Thursday at noon for Naked Lunch.
There has been a lot of criticism of the wardrobe in the film. What did you think of the way the characters were styled?
I think most fashion insiders would agree that the clothes worn by the characters working at the fashion magazine were not based on reality. I think it was smart of Patricia Field - the film's costumer - to go for gusto and deck them out in the more dramatic, loud, direct-from-the-runway, logo driven looks. While most magazine editors would opt for quieter labels and attire - they work in an office after all - the cinematic translation would be hugely underwhelming. Can you imagine what the masses - which this film would appeal to - would think when they see an austere Jil Sander suit? And the poetic beauty of Marni and Rochas would be lost in translation. Derick
I was surprised that Miranda Priestly was styled more like former Vogue editor Grace Mirabella than Anna Wintour. And that Andy's character wore so much Chanel, a favourite label of Wintour's. I found this confusing, even though I think Anne Hathaway looked amazing. Also, Miranda is the villain here, and Andy is the heroine. Does this mean that Chanel is somehow more virtuous than Bill Blass, Giorgio Armani and Valentino, the labels Miranda wore? I would also like to add how much Miranda's jewelry bugged me. Her fussy necklaces and earrings were gaudy, ugly and dated. Bernadette
Are fashion people really as nasty as they are portrayed in the film?
Of course not! What a ridiculous question!!! We are sweet as pie! Ah, just kidding there. In fact that is one of my criticisms about the film. I generally find my colleagues to be very well-mannered and polite. At least to my face. Who knows what they say behind my back. Fashion people can be a catty bunch, though. We might discuss what someone is wearing, but would never insult them directly, as Miranda Priestly and her first assistant do to Andy in the film. Bernadette
I also think that the Canadian fashion press are much nicer than our New York counterparts. It's a very small circle here. But in New York, the stakes are higher, the industry is powerful and is played out on a global scale. And with this, along comes the stress, the bitchiness and need to stay on top. Derick
I agree with Derick, except that I did work for Bonnie Fuller when she was editor of Flare. She is an excellent editor who is drastically lacking in bedside manner. Maybe that's one of the reasons she has done so well in New York. Though I hate to think you have to be nasty to get ahead. Bernadette
I read last week in your Fashion section that Toronto designer Izzy Camilleri had a coat in the film. How does a young designer get their clothes into films?
Izzy hired a PR agency in New York to help expand her business in the US. This particular agency is popular with a lot of the established stylists in New York City and they often borrow clothes for celebrities and photo shoots. Pat Field, the film's costumer, was already familiar with Izzy's work, having borrowed some of her clothes for previous films and television shows. Here in Toronto, you should contact some of the agencies that rep wardrobe stylists and arrange to show them your work for any celebrities they dress or music videos they might be working on. Derick