Culver City Historical Society – Adkins on Adrian

Researching something stylish? The Culver City Historical Society’s meeting on Tuesday, July 18, heard author Richard Adkins on the famous “golden era of Hollywood”  designer Adrian. His thoughtful and often hilarious tribute to the great designer was grounded by a stunning presentation of photos of gowns by Adrian from The Sheik to The Wizard of Oz and beyond, in a chronological order.

Adkins accompanied these beautiful photos with well researched insight into the complexities of the time from contractual vagaries and studio takeovers to difficult star clients. Richard’s knowledge on the subject was delightfully detailed and deeply nuanced, and focused on the social and economical forces affecting the designer as well as on the clothes themselves.

Among the little-known and often surprising facts included in the presentation; Did you know the ‘Munchkins’ clothes were all made from felt? Or that a typical designer contract for a movie like The Sheik included every gown the women wore, but only fantasy dress for the men – standard male evening wear was farmed out to local suit shops.

Intrigued?  Adkins book Adrian: American Designer, Hollywood Legend is available from the author as an e- book. Contact him at [email protected].

Dani Crum

Photo – MGM film “The Women,” costume design by Adrian

The Actors' Gang