The spring runways were awash with ‘70s inspired pieces this year. From Balmain, to Dolce and Gabbana to Gucci, fringe, suede, double-breasted military style jackets, fur embellishments and relaxed fit wide legged pants strutted the runways. While the decade has remained a long-standing source of inspiration for designers, elevated post-hippie chic looks have become the style du jour touted by every major lifestyle publication as the hottest trend of the year. Part of this 2015 ‘70s inspired frenzy from runway looks, to exaggerated festival style to music is capped with the impeccably styled Oscar nominated costume design in Paul Thomas Anderson’s Inherent Vice. While the film itself, based off of the book by Thomas Pynchon, nabbed two Oscar nods and received mixed reviews, one of the most acclaimed components of the film was the work of costume designer Mark Bridges.
Where last year’s American Hustle showcased glamorous 1970s New York style, Inherent Vice shows the West Coast aesthetic on the tail end of the hippie heyday. Set in California, the drug fueled characters don laid-back looks, muted colours and prints. Michael Wilkinson sourced vintage Diane Von Furstenberg wrap dresses for American Hustle as opposed to Bridges who told Style.com he took influence from Rudi Gernreich’s swimwear designs. One of the jumpsuits worn by a receptionist character in the film was originally a Gernreich swimsuit. Bridges says he observed Gernreich’s construction techniques and implemented them when designing for the film. The costume designer also revealed that Reese Witherspoon’s looks were created from vintage fabrics.
Bridges masterfully recreates period wardrobes; in 2012 he won an Oscar for his work on The Artist. He realized another one of Paul Thomas Anderson’s 1970s visions in the 1997 film Boogie Nights. His insights on the collaborative process between Anderson and himself serve as a delightful look at the role of costume in film. Bridges philosophy on costume design also doubles as sound style advice when styling vintage or modern pieces. “With fashion I try to find the most out-there visuals that tell a story but don’t take you out of the moment of the film. ” So when trying out that ‘70s inspired look this season perhaps inspired by Katherine Waterston’s dreamy looks in Inherent Vice think show-stopper that still reads of the moment.