Monday, November 9, 2015

Inspiration: That Touch of Mink

I had a mostly lazy weekend, and Doris Day films featured prominently in my activities. Have you seen That Touch of Mink? It's such a fashion treat! The clothes are done by the great Norman Norell, and there's a fantastic personal shopping scene. This is one of my favorite conceits of movies of this time: the personal fashion show! (There's a great one in How to Marry a Millionaire, which I also happened to watch this weekend. No wonder I didn't get any sewing done.)

The best thing about this particular scene is the coat at the end. It has a fur lining and interchangeable shells in satin and wool. How fascinating is that? (I also love the pink satin and lace pant ensemble toward the middle.)

It seems like the two layers connect somehow at the center front but otherwise the fur lining just sits inside the outer shell. It would be fun to do something similar with the wonderful faux furs they're making these days. 

I highly recommend the movie for that scene alone, but also the stunning strappy dress that feels both modern and perfectly vintage.

It's also well worth a watch for the scenes with Doris Day and her best friend (played by Audrey Meadows) communicating through the windows of the automat.

Apparently automat workers had the cutest uniforms ever. Who knew?

I hope you got more sewing done than I did this weekend!


  1. Funnily enough I recently inherited a fabulous full length mink coat, from the '80s. I'm thinking of refashioning it into a more modern garment - what I really wanted to do was make it into the world's most deluxe parka - a cashmere outer shell with the mink as the lining. I"m guessing I would make the shell myself and get a furrier to make the mink "lining." But maybe a shape like you show above would make a little more sense - certainly would be easier!

  2. Sorry to go off on a tangent, but my favourite coat from films is Audrey Hepburn's yellow Givenchy coat, in the film Charade. I've tried to find a pattern, but no luck.

    1. I love that coat too! Have you seen this blog post? She suggests a Vogue pattern that you would need to make some modifications too. Might be a good starting point though.

    2. Thanks Gertie - I wonder if I dare! (at my age.)

  3. I love these old shows and their personal fashion shows! I had these weird thoughts of, "I wonder where they would find women my size?" and "Would I like a fashion show filled with clothes that address my needs?" i.e. swayback, full tummy, voluminous pear. Definitely insecurity showing. Regardless, Doris Day is so lucky to get that coat.

  4. Thanks, Gertie, for the eye it! I think the '50s are one of my, if not the, favorite fashion eras.

  5. now totally distracted for day..............divine

  6. Love that coat, what a smart idea. I wonder how the pieces connect, buttons maybe?


Thanks for your comments; I read each and every one! xo Gertie

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