Sunday, April 13, 2014

Vintage Inspiration - Sally on Saturday

Sally Eillers models Vera West fashion

Vera West was a costume designer with over 300 credits to her name.  Some of the well-known films she designed for were:  Shadow of a Doubt, the Sherlock Holmes film series with Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce, W.C. Fields films like The Bank Dick, Destry Rides Again, and horror film classics like The Wolf Man, The Mummy, and Dracula.

Vera West (1900 - 29 June 1947)

Vera West is not only known for her classic "damsel in distress" costuming, but her tragic death.  She committed suicide in her pool.  Her note said she was tired of being blackmailed for over 20 years and needed to be free.  It was never found out who was blackmailing her nor why.  Rumor is she had an out of wedlock child.  Not so much of a big deal now, but would be career-destroying at the time.  Thankfully, we have photographs and costumes remaining to illustrate her genius.

New York Times; 30 June 1947

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