I adore Jane Fonda. The majority of her film career came before my time, but that hasn't stopped me from emulating her onscreen style like so many others got to while the movies were still on the marquee.
The most recently demonstrated Fondness for Fonda? Kim Kardashian's new Beach Bunny Swimwear line, which she claims is "inspired by Jane Fonda in the movie Barbarella, where she plays a super-sci-fi-sexy Queen of the Galaxy!"
While the reference is apt, it seems to have everything to do with the addition of a cosmonaut's helmet and lace up go-go boots rather than the plain white (*yawn*) string bikini Kim 'designed'.
It's hard to believe the same little actress embodied the space vixen Barbarella, desperate dance marathoner of They Shoot Horses, Don't They?, gunslinging Cat Ballou, and literate half of Stanley & Iris. She's so versatile. But far and away, my favourite Jane Fonda role is her 1971 turn as hard-boiled call girl Bree Daniels. The thriller may have been named Klute, but it was all about Bree.
Like the acting, the costuming was pitch perfect and a prime reason for seeing the film.
That slinky sequin maxi-dress was a character all it's own, driving the action forward as Bree met with a client and then slowly disrobed back at her apartment, luring Klute all the while. Some actresses have the ability to move inside their wardrobe in such a way that the sartorial comes to life. Sarah Jessica Parker always seems to manage both hair-acting and clothes-acting, adding realism to her performances. I love her for that.
While I don't have the lithe physique to pull off a full-body sequin sock with aplomb, I do intend to don some of The Fonda's other 70's looks:
Klute looks that keep on keeping on: feather choker, maxi skirts, saturated jewel tones, feathery false lashes and pale lips, neutral turtlenecks, chunky leather accessories, poet sleeve blouses, suede vests, leather-piped camel trench, knee or thigh-high boots.
Klute looks that didn't quite make it to 2010: skirts so short they might as well be belts, tank tops sans brassiere, shaggy mullet, having sex for money.