Though I watch period pieces throughout the year, the chilly, crisp air of November always invokes my need to share this passion and love (as you may remember my Why I Am Thankful for Period Piece Adaptations series from two years ago). I find myself revisiting the works that range from a minimum of 4-6 hours while wrapped in blankets with either a cup of tea, my current knitting project, or a device to work on a digital sketch.
All this is to say, I was inspired to present an adaptation of one of my favorite books for Vintage Film Threads for this November. Instead of planning to copy the looks exactly, I decided find modern vintage pieces for you to adapt the looks to your everyday life.
Persuasion is my favorite work by Jane Austen. I carried it on my wedding day as my "book-quet." It is a story about waiting, forgiveness, and a deep love that never fades away. Anne Elliot is the overlooked daughter, ignored by her older sister, disregarded by her vain father, and used as an audience for her younger sister's hypochondriac drama. The Elliots are a prideful family, except for Anne, whose only misstep in character came from being persuaded at 19 to break off her engagement to a naval officer, Frederick Wentworth. The story picks up with a 27 year-old Anne, who is still unmarried and has never encountered a man who can hold a candle to Wentworth.
As her family has to downsize (thanks to living beyond their means), rent out their house, and move to Bath for a while, the stage is set for Captain Wentworth to come back into her life. It turns out his sister and brother-in-law (Admiral and Mrs Croft) are the chosen tenants of Kellynch Hall (the Elliot estate).
I will be enjoying a re-read of this book, but also one of the many adaptations. For this installation of Vintage Film Threads, I selected the 2007 version (starting Sally Hawkins as Anne and Rupert Penry-Jones as Wentworth), but it was a tough choice as I also adore the 1995 version with Amanda Root and Ciarán Hinds and the slower paced 1971 version with Ann Firbank and Bryan Marshall (which I chose from 1970s prints for the costumes).
In the 2007 adaptation, Anne's wardrobe includes a specific color palette: purple, greens, blues, and grays (as you can see from the sampling above). Using this color palette, I looked for vintage pieces that could mix or match to create modern Anne Elliot looks, such as coats that can layer with the selected dresses, or a hat that can go with all of the pieces in the collection.
From top to bottom/left to right: 1) a short or cropped embroidered jacket. 2) A simple teal dress to brighten one's mood on overcast days in Lyme. 3) A longer paisley print jacket to keep out the cold temperatures. 4) A dress that comes with a matching capelet or jacket. 5) A wool beret (or maybe a cloche hat) in one of Anne's signature colors to replace the bonnet. 6) A long dress perfect for evenings, preferably in velvet.