In honor of Presidents’ Day, I just couldn’t resist sharing a little Style File from a favorite of ours: 1942’s Holiday Inn. It’s the classic story of boy meets girl set to the tunes of Irving Berlin.
Boy falls in love with girl. Boy’s friend steals girl. Boy moves to farm and finds new girl. Rinse and repeat.
Some would call it a Christmas movie, but I think it’s best enjoyed during the month of February: such a short month yet so many holidays! Regardless of when, here are a few things to be taken…
Old movie sets remind us that cliché can sometimes be fantastic.
The house used in Holiday Inn was the *perfect* New England home. So perfect, in fact, that it was later reused in 1954’s White Christmas. (Personally, my dream house will have those big windows!) However, a few nuances I’d really like to point out are the contrasts between the “girl’s room” and the “boy’s room.” Please note: the lace curtains, hand-painted glass lamps, and chaise lounge, versus the printed drapes and model ship. I’m not gonna lie, I have to go with the gender stereotypes on this one; I’d love to put on my make-up in front of that vanity. (My regular, non-controversial makeup that brings me closer to looking like Joan Rivers than Jennifer Hudson, but keep reading.)
Find a room that has it all.
Working in the industry that I do, I often hear people go on and on about open-concept floor plans. Personally, I’ll just take this one living room if you don’t mind.
When it comes to holidays, overdo it!
Holiday Inn is just that: an inn that is open *just* for holidays. And each holiday comes with some seriously fantastic decor. Take a look…
Maybe I Should Clarify…
Overdo it… tastefully. Which brings us to the first February holiday: February 12th, Abraham Lincoln’s birthday. The performance of “Abraham” (obviously not Irving Berlin’s best work) has become so controversial that most channels airing the movie cut it entirely.
While the black face makes my stomach ache, it’s interesting to think of it in the context of when this movie was made: 1942. That’s nearly 80 years after the Civil War’s conclusion but just a decade before the Civil Rights Movement really got ramped up.
Also worth noting in this song (and throughout the film) is the fabulous Louise Beavers. You may recognize her because around this time she was in everything! (For instance, she absolutely stole the show in this movie with Cary Grant.)
Anyway, after Lincoln’s birthday is Valentine’s Day which, of course, is best celebrated surrounded by an overabundance of hearts, lace, crepe paper, and plenty of creepy cupids! As a side note, how glorious is that dress?
We really should work together to bring back “Black Tie.”
Finally, in the words of Paula Deen,
“The closer to Jesus, the better we like it!”
Maybe it’s the Southern Belle in me, but don’t you just *adore* the hair and dress for George Washington’s birthday? It’s as if Linda Mason could be Scarlett O’Hara’s 18th century cousin with that hoop skirt & big hair!
So Happy Presidents’ Day! Will you be watching Holiday Inn? If so, please remember to celebrate in style!