I have a list of stylish movies that I want to profile on my blog, but lately I haven't had the time to watch them. (Capturing screen shots of a movie's interiors takes forever.) But, I did find an article in the April 1941 issue of House & Garden which featured the dressing and powder rooms in the homes of the leading movie stars of the day. Sounds like something that InStyle might feature today.
Anyway, the rooms are as glitzy as one might expect though they're actually not tacky at all. Look closely at the photos and you just might get a few ideas for your own dressing room.
The dressing room at the top of this post and the powder room above were in the home of actress Joan Bennett. Her mirrored dressing room was awash in seafoam green and pink which evidently matched her boudoir. The wallpaper and the chintz on the chair were the same pattern. The powder room, located downstairs in Bennett's home, was green and white striped. The floor was covered in hand-painted floral black canvas.
In 1941, Bennett shared this home with her husband, producer Walter Wanger. It's interesting to note that ten years later, Wanger shot and injured Bennett's agent, Jennings Lang, with whom Wanger believed Bennett was having an affair. Bennett denied the affair. Needless to say, it caused quite a scandal at the time. And to think that Bennett played the prim and proper mother in "Father of the Bride" and "Father's Little Dividend"!
Only one masculine dressing room was featured in this article (although I would add that it's not terribly masculine): that of Robert Montgomery. His room featured photographs of fencers on the wall. (As it turns out, Montgomery was a fencer.) Note the mirrored corner.
I have to admit that I usually like any Kay Francis movie that I see. That might be because most of them are a little tawdry. But, there is nothing tawdry about Francis' dressing room, one which H&G notes was carefully lighted to avoid casting any shadows on Francis' face.
Of all of the dressing rooms featured in the article, that of Mr. and Mrs. Sam Jaffe might be my favorite. Yes, it's small, and I'm not so crazy about that frilly stool (it looks like it's wearing a petticoat.) But, I do like the use of mirror, not to mention the wall lined in Godey prints.
All images from House & Garden, April 1941.