Saturday Night Fever Fashion Defines an Era
Saturday Night Fever is an iconic film from 1977 that helped define an era. Famed for its catchy soundtrack and street style, as well as unreserved depictions of sexual tension, it remains controversial due to Tony Manero’s sexually charged depictions.
Manero, a dancer who spends his weekends enlivening disco dance floors across Bay Ridge and Brooklyn is at the center of this film, depicting working class Italian-American youth who use disco to escape their problems and unwind at nightclubs – this theme can often be found in films set during this era – and many have had an influenceful lasting legacy today.
Costume designer Patrizia von Brandenstein did an exceptional job creating outfits to depict this period in history. At a time when polyester has often been mischaracterized as garish or oversexed, her costumes successfully captured its look authentically and added even greater authenticity to the film and its depictions of its depicted period.
Patrizia not only designed costumes for this film, but she also provided hairstyles and makeup designs. Her styles were both stylish yet edgy to help convey an image of rebellion among young adults. Makeup was particularly important in creating its look – helping establish characters while giving them freedom to express their individual personalities through their appearances.
One of the most iconic outfits from The Godfather II film is Manero’s white three-piece suit, instantly recognisable as one of fashion’s icons. Now up for auction at Julien’s Auctions’ Hollywood: Classic & Contemporary sale taking place this month, Julien’s reported that this suit sold for $260,000 which was an astounding price point considering perspiration marks were present from John Travolta himself, further adding value.
Leather jackets were another iconic fashion item during this era, worn by both men and women alike. A timeless trend, they add some edge to an otherwise plain outfit and can even be combined with various different styles for added edginess.
Fashion trends from that era remain relevant today; one example being the puka shell necklace. Popular among both women and men alike, these were worn together with love beads or mood rings for added effect. The 1970s was a memorable period in history, so it is fascinating to witness its influence in contemporary styles.