Thanks for posting those picture of Barbara Stanwyck. She never gets enough love and she certainly always looked fab in Edith Head's creations!
I bought the Jay Jorgensen book, Edith Head: The fifty year career of Hollywood's greatest costume designer. Posting a mini-review here in case you are on the fence on whether to get it or not. I give it 3 stars out of five.
It is definitely worth getting, but I don't rec paying full price for it. It's a decent book, but it has several flaws that can't be overlooked.
~really good (often full page) pictures of sketches and costumes from the various movies Edith worked on
~lots of pictures about Edith and her distinctive style
~lots of information on how Edith developed her wardrobes for various films and how her working relationships with stars and directors informed the choices she made for each film's wardrobe/character personas.
~she has credits on over 1000 films and designed wardrobes for stars offscreen but we see NOTHING of her off-screen wardrobe creations and only a scant 100 or so films. Most film wardrobes are described rather than shown
~TOO many pictures of "Edith and xy star looking at a sketch." Nothing wrong with these types of pictures, except they all look the same.
~TOO many pictures of Edith...that look the same (usually she is pictured making a sketch). Her personality rarely comes through in the pictures of her that were used.
~the endless lot of grammar and spelling errors. Every page is filled with typos.
Edith Head/Mae West
A costume design for Mae West, circa 1970s, possibly for Sextette, 1978, graphite and watercolour on board, signed and inscribed in pencil Mae West, To Scotty, with love, Edith, Edith Head -- 20x15in. (50.8x38.1cm.); and a black and white photograph of Edith Head with her Academy Awards, 1970s, signed and inscribed in black felt pen To my friend Scotty, Edith Head -- 10x8in. (25.4x20.3cm.)
Price Realized: $900
The Ten Commandments, 1956/Anne Baxter/Edith Head
A costume design by Edith Head for Anne Baxter as Nefretiri in the 1956 Paramount Pictures film The Ten Commandments, watercolour and graphite on board, with fabric swatches, signed and inscribed by Edith Head in pencil lower left To John, With Love, Edith, inscribed with scene details Nefretiri, #2 Nefretiri's Balcony, Scenes B-32-33-34 -- 20x15in. 50.8x38.1cm.)
Price Realized: $2,880
Samson And Delilah, 1949/Hedy Lamarr/Edith Head
A costume design by Edith Head for Hedy Lamarr as Delilah in the 1949 Paramount Pictures film Samson And Delilah, watercolour on board, signed by Edith Head in pencil lower left -- 20x15in. (50.8x38.1cm.)
Price Realized: $2,640
Edith Head - Sweet Charity, 1969
A costume design by Edith Head for Paula Kelly as Helene in the 1969 Universal Pictures' film Sweet Charity, watercolour and graphite on board, signed and inscribed in pencil To Bill - Fondly - Edith, titled in Head's hand There's gotta be something here, (a song from the film), additionally inscribed with costume details and with fabric swatch attached -- 19x14½in. (48.3x37cm.), framed
Price Realized: £300 ($441)
Katherine Ross costume design sketch by Edith Head from "Butch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid"
20the Century Fox, 1969
A watercolor and pencil on board costume sketch depicting Katharine Ross as Etta attired in a mint green period gown. Designed by Edith Head, this piece has her handwritten notations in pencil and black felt-tip ink on the right-side margin and has fabric swatches stapled to the top right-side corner. Also included is a smaller sketch from the same film showing a posse of six men riding their horses.
19 inches x 14 inches (2)
Price Realized: $1,175
Edith Head/Anita Ekberg
Artists And Models, 1955
a costume design for Anita Ekberg as Anita in the 1955 Paramount film Artists And Models, graphite and watercolour on paper, signed in pencil by Edith Head, additionally inscribed with subject's name and stage details -- 16¾x13in. (42.5x33cm.) framed
Price Realized: £494 ($711)
Edith Head - Helen Hayes
Original costume sketch for Hayes' Academy Award winning role in Airport,1970. Edith Head was nominated for an Academy Award for her designs for this film.
Price Realized: $125
Edith Head/Lucille Ball - The Facts Of Life, 1960
a costume design for Lucille Ball as Kitty Weaver in the 1960 M.G.M. film The Facts Of Life, graphite and pastel on board, signed and titled by the artist -- 27x21in. (68.6x53.3cm.)
Price Realized: £999 ($1,593)
Edith Head - Natalie Wood
Original costume sketch for Penelope,1966.
Price Realized:: $375
Janet Leigh - The 1959 Academy Awards
Silver Beaded Evening Dress
The pink georgette, ankle-length dress is form fitted, embroidered overall with silver glass bugle beads, detailed with stand-up collar and self belt.
Price Realized: $34,500
Edith Head signed "The Sting" costume sketch for design show
A watercolor, ink and pencil rendering of Paul Newman and Robert Redford in costume for their roles in the film The Sting (Universal) signed "Edith Head" lower right. The sketch was created for a touring fashion show conducted by Edith Head during the 1970s featuring recreations of her costume work in films.
24 x 30 inches
Price Realized: $956
Costume Design sketch by Edith Head from "Butch Cassidy and the Sundace Kid"
20th Century Fox, 1969
A watercolor and pencil on board costume sketch depicting Paul Newman as Butch Cassidy attired in western garb and a cowboy hat. Created by Edith Head, her handwritten notations are pencilled along the lower margin and fabric swatches are stapled to the upper left-hand corner.
19 inches x 15 inches
Price Realized: $1,410
A New Kind Of Love, 1963
A watercolour, graphite and crayon costume sketch of Paul Newman as Steve Sherman in the Llenroc Productions' film A New Kind Of Love, 1963, overall measurements -- 20x15in. (50.7x38cm.)
Price Realized: £750 ($1,102)
Edith Head And Audrey Hepburn - Breakfast At Tiffany's, 1961
A watercolour and pencil costume sketch of Audrey Hepburn as Holly Golightly in the Paramount film Breakfast At Tiffany's, 1961, the sketch showing Hubert de Givenchy's design for the long black column gown worn by Audrey Hepburn in the opening scenes of Breakfast At Tiffany', the dress shown at three different angles, signed in pencil by Edith Head and ink-stamped PRODUCTIONS ART DEPT -- 21½x14½in. (54.6x37cm.); with a sheet of Memo From Edith Head Designing stationery attached annotated with three pencil sketches for similar angles, probably a directive for the final sketch -- 8½x5½in. (21.6x14cm.)
Although Hubert de Givenchy designed Audrey Hepburn's key costumes for Breakfast At Tiffany's, her more pedestrian clothes in the film, were provided by the Paramount wardrobe department, supervised by Edith Head. According to Head's biographer, David Chierichetti, Givenchy's gowns for this film, which Audrey is said to have brought with her to America from Paris... were not enough to dress the whole film since the character of Holly Golightly also needed some plain clothes and doubles for the Givenchy dresses, which Edith provided...The film carried the singular credit: "Miss Hepburn's wardrobe principally by Hubert de Givenchy, Miss Neal's wardrobe principally by Pauline Trigére, costume supervision by Edith Head.."
Edith Head gave Audrey Hepburn credit for her sense of style. In an uncharacterically diplomatic statement to the press Head said of her: ..."Audrey could have been a designer herself, she has such perfect taste..." As Chierichetti points out, it was Hepburn's unerring judgement which led her to choose Givenchy rather than Head. ....Going to Givenchy and making the selections she made (styles Edith would never have deemed appropriate) was a rite of passage for Hepburn. She truly was the one star who instinctively knew what was best for her...
CHIERICHETTI, David Edith Head: The Life and Times of Hollywood's Celebrated Costume Designer, New York: Harper Collins, 2003, pp.136-138
Thank for the scans Mirik
christies.com Grace Kelly
click twice for full size
Edith Head and Grace Kelly To Catch A Thief, 1955
A watercolour and pencil costume sketch of Grace Kelly as Frances Stevens in the Paramount film To Catch A Thief, 1955, directed by Alfred Hitchcock, the sketch showing Grace Kelly in her controversial beach-wear ensemble worn while walking through the hotel lobby when Cary Grant, as John Robie, first catches a glimpse of her, the outfit shown in three different angles, signed in pencil by Edith Head and ink-stamped on the front and verso Paramount Pictures Corporation -- 20x15in. (51x38cm.), framed; accompanied by a black and white still from the set
Price Realized:£8,750 ($13,808)
Edith Head and Grace Kelly Rear Window, 1954
A watercolour and pencil costume sketch of Grace Kelly as Lisa Carol Fremont in the Paramount film Rear Window, 1954, directed by Alfred Hitchcock, the sketch showing Hitchcock's vision of a eau-du-nil green two piece suit and white halter-neck shirt worn by Grace Kelly during a scene where she and James Stewart, as L.B "Jeff" Jeffries, observe Raymond Burr, as Lars Thorwold [the salesman], going through his wife's handbag, the outfit shown at three different angles, signed in pencil by Edith Head and ink-stamped on the verso Paramount Pictures Corporation -- 17x14in. (43x35.5cm.), framed; accompanied by a black and white publicity photograph [printed later] of Grace Kelly wearing the same costume
Grace Kelly's costumes in Rear Window were designed to depict Kelly's character as an astute career woman, working in the fashion industry, but also to exude her femininity and allure. The mint green Balenciaga inspired suit, with unexpected halter-neck white shirt underneath, is a perfect marriage to illustrate the various sides of Kelly's on-screen personality.
Price Realized: £6,250 ($9,863)
Edith Head And Grace Kelly Rear Window, 1954
A watercolour and pencil costume sketch of Grace Kelly as Lisa Carol Fremont in the Paramount film Rear Window, 1954, directed by Alfred Hitchcock, the sketch showing Hitchcock's vision of a floral sundress worn by Grace Kelly during the explosive scenes when the murder is discovered, signed in pencil by Edith Head and ink-stamped on the verso Paramount Pictures Corporation -- 16.3.4x13¾in. (42.5x35cm.), framed; accompanied by a black and white publicity photograph [printed later] of Grace Kelly in this costume
This pretty floral dress was designed to heighten Grace Kelly's femininity when she breaks into Thorwold's apartment. To help to exaggerate this further Kelly added extra petticoats under the dress and wore high heels. In contrast to the other costumes we see Kelly in, this is the only one that has an obvious pattern on the material, a purposeful choice. It is of interest to see that in the accompanying press photograph of Kelly wearing this costume that she is holding a sun-hat, in the film this hat is absent.
Price Realized: £6,250 ($9,863)
Edith Head and Grace Kelly Rear Window, 1954
A watercolour and pencil costume sketch of Grace Kelly as Lisa Carol Fremont in the Paramount film Rear Window, 1954, directed by Alfred Hitchcock, the sketch showing Hitchcock's vision of a black and white evening gown worn by Grace Kelly in her opening scene, the outfit shown at two different angles, titled in pencil Grace Kelly and signed Edith Head, ink-stamped on the verso Paramount Pictures Corporation -- 20x15in. (51x38.5cm.), framed; accompanied by a black and white film still [printed later] and a publicity photograph of Grace Kelly wearing this costume
Alfred Hitchcock had definite ideas as to how Grace Kelly would be dressed as his leading lady in Rear Window. He envisaged each costume to inevitably aid the development of Kelly's character to the audience, add to the conflict within the film and assist in advancing the narrative. Hitchcock noted his stipulations for each of the five costumes Kelly should wear in the script. Edith Head recalled There was a reason for every colour Grace wore, every style, and he was absolutely certain about everything...Hitch [sic] wanted her to appear like a piece of Dresden china, something slightly untouchable.
Edith Head and Grace Kelly worked closely together to create the costumes Hitchcock desired. Aided by Grace Kelly's beauty, understated glamour and modelling experience, it is perceived that these costumes are some of the most elegant that Edith Head designed. An example of this is visible in Grace Kelly's entrance in the film. To emphasise Kelly's introduction to the audience she wears a three quarter length evening gown comprising a black v-neck top and full white skirt embellished with black beading, identifying the character's love of fashion and affluent social status. Assisting Edith Head with the sketching of the costume designs was Grace Sprague, who was brought in from New York specifically to work on Rear Window.
Price Realized: £8,125 ($12,821)