Fashion and film have long been intertwined. Several movie costumes, Audrey Hepburn’s iconic black cocktail dress in Breakfast at Tiffany’s to name but one, have arguably become even more famous than the movies in which they featured. Much has been written on the topic of unforgettable costumes in twentieth century cinema, yet there has been much less discussion on the topic of fashion in more recent films.

Several recent movies have had huge influences on wider styles and trends; the recent Hollywood Costume exhibition at London’s Victoria and Albert Museum is proof of the enduring interest in movie fashion. Think the days of amazing style in film are long gone? Think again, as we highlight five amazing costumes featured in five must-see recent films:


5. The Great Gatsby (2013) – Leonardo DiCaprio’s Cream Sweater


A movie bursting with embellished gowns, priceless diamonds and elegant three-part-suits, Baz Luhrmann’s recent imagining of The Great Gatsby was always going to be a visual masterpiece. Before the film was released there was speculation about the potential stand-out fashion moment, with much buzz on the topic of the imposing ‘chandelier dress’ worn by Carey Mulligan as Daisy Buchanan. The piece of clothing that ultimately took centre stage was a far simpler and more subtle item of clothing: the cream coloured sweater Leonardo DiCaprio wears as Gatsby in the scenes in which he shows Daisy around his Long Island home.

It is a simple and subtle design, but the luxurious material ensures it nevertheless exudes extravagance. The viewer can easily comprehend why Daisy is moved to admire Gatsby for always looking “so cool.”

Choosing to dress Gatsby in white was also an intriguing choice by costume designer Catherine Martin, due to its connotations with innocence. For all his dubious associates and forays into the black market, Jay Gatsby retains a childlike innocence in his unstoppable pursuit of Daisy. In a single item of clothing, this crucial aspect of Gatsby’s personality was perfectly epitomised.

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This article was first posted on June 6, 2013