A Marilyn Monroe-inspired 1950s pants outfit from Gentlemen Prefer Blondes

My Marilyn outfit

I’m a natural brunette with black hair, so I don’t necessarily share the title sentiment of Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, but I do love Marilyn Monroe and enjoy her William Travilla- designed wardrobe from the 1953 film. Recently, Esther of MorningstarPinup on Etsy made me a custom version of the green-top, dark-pants, lavender sash outfit Marilyn’s character, Lorelei Lee, wears in the movie.

My Marilyn outfit
Marilyn as Lorelei Lee

Esther’s already made me several other great custom pieces, including Marilyn’s Grauman’s Chinese Theater handprint ceremony dress, Elizabeth Taylor’s green dress from Suddenly Last Summer, and a beautiful blue linen dress modeled after the one worn by Christina Hendricks as Joan on Mad Men. They all fit well and look great, and my newest Esther addition is no exception.

The top is very carefully-constructed. The sash is essentially the lower portion of the top, boned and pleated to fit closely. The green upper portion is a nice stretch knit in a beautiful Kelly green. There is a back zip that starts in the middle of the back and closes down at the waist. The pants are high-waisted with back zip, made from a comfortable stretch twill. In all, the materials are contemporary and comfortable, chosen to create the drape and appearance of the original fabrics. The original top was probably more of a muted green, and it’s possible that the pants were likely a dark, dark blue velvet, but it doesn’t matter. I like the way these fabrics and colors go together. They create the screen look and are easy to wear out in the real world!

Travilla and Marilyn

I decided to flower up my hair to take a few pictures. Instead of the great, chunky stone jewelry Marilyn wears, I had to make do with some vintage lucite “confetti” jewelry. I’m wearing Spanx hi-rise shorts and a longline strapless bra underneath everything.

My Marilyn outfit

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