The fashion and film industries are vastly different from each other, but that being said, they rely on one another.
Without fashion, films would be bland as well as lacking on one of the most important elements of storytelling: the setting. Costumes set things into place, give characters personality, and develop the overall mood of the film. Without film, designers would have less of a platform and the average person would be less aware of styles, period clothing, and so much more. The two industries are very much intertwined and a part of each other.
Every film made is significantly backed by fashion. Costume designers work to make sure the wardrobe is period-accurate and assists in bettering the story the film is presenting. Take films such as The Favourite (2018) and The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014). Both are dependent on the clothing worn in them to complete the story and the overall vision and aesthetics. Many films are also styled to be an accurate depiction of the era they’re set in and are now looked at as hallmarks of that time period. Clueless (1995) and Heathers (1988) show the clear style popularized in the mid 80s and 90s; some of which being plaid patterns and blazers. On top of the fashion used in films, so many of the professions in the fashion industry directly impact the film industry. Some examples of these jobs are costume designers, stylists, and fashion videographers.
Countless films have impacted the fashion industry in one way or another. Whether it be by inspiring a designer or popularizing a new trend, films are very effective in influencing fashion as a whole. Films have been known to influence individual sense of style as well as bringing new ideas into the fashion industry. Characters from various films and television shows have been looked at as fashion inspiration for decades. Some popular examples of these are Cher Horowitz from Clueless (1995), Rachel Green from Friends, and Holly Golightly from Breakfast at Tiffany’s (1961). Many costume designers even focus directly on this goal: making the fashion memorable and coveted. Once the costume design is memorable, the character(s) and the film are then looked at from multiple points of view: as a fashion icon/inspiration and as a film with creative costume design. These aspects together can greatly contribute to a film’s success and popularity, especially over time. Even though the impact of film on the fashion industry isn’t as direct as the latter, it’s affect is a lot more personal to the public.
The most impactful part of both industries and their ties to each other is how direct their effect is on daily life. As mentioned before, fashion in films and other widely broadcast mediums has started countless trends and inspired personal sense of style. The clothes people wear are such an expression of personality and self, thus, films adding to or even changing that can make a huge difference. This can go the other way, as well, with the impact of fashion on film. The personal experiences and inspirations of costume and fashion designers can completely change the way costume design is done on a film. It’s as much of a form of self-expression as personal sense of style. Everything about fashion and films is so deeply rooted in personality, creativity, and individuality so it’s only natural for the combination of these to be completely intertwined with these qualities as well.