Reel Women: Bell Book and Candle

bell book and candle vintage stylebell book and candle vintage style bell book and candle vintage style

backless maxi dress | beaded bracelet | cigarette trouser | cowl | tiny wine-y red polish | yellow shift | patent pump |

I’m not into Halloween. Not at all actually. No ghouls, or goblins…and the only witch I’ll watch is the one played by Kim Novak in this movie. Carving a pumpkin is fun, drinking pumpkin lattes…yeah, duh…but everyone’s fascination with Halloween horror is one I’ll never understand. Yuck, yuck, yuck. Kim Novak always played a rather angsty leading lady. She always reminded me a bit of a, well, “deeper” version of Marilyn Monroe…as if Marilyn’s troubled, true-self finally made it past her ditzy, easy-going facade to pose as Miss Novak.

Novak’s style was pretty modern for her era: except for her “sweet” look in Bell, Book, and Candle with the usual 1950’s/60’s cinched waist, flowy A-line, and matching pumps, her normal looks were slinky, full-length dresses, and cigarette pants paired with an oversized top/sweater. She was also far more overtly sexual than many of the leading ladies of her time, yet, she never dipped into the sleezy category. Halloween is notorious for being the one day of the year where anything goes. Every single Oct. 31st, my tiny college town went from middle-class educated, slightly hipster yet completely civilized, to all out slutville in under 24 hours. I don’t know when Halloween became so sleezy, but if I’m going to be angsty and slithery this Halloween, I’d do it Kim Novak’s way: with quite a bit of class.

font and kim novak image via

– <3 A.

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