Style Focus – Hayworth’s Hits
She may not have started trends with her clothes the way she did with her wavy red hair, but the lovely Rita Hayworth always looked gorgeous – especially in her mid-1940s heyday.
Rita’s iconic black satin evening gown in the 1946 melodrama Gilda remained the slinkiest, sexiest sheath until Jessica Rabbit sidled onto our screens in the 1980s. Like Jessica, Rita looked as if she had been poured into her slashed-to-the-thigh Jean Louis gown with the matching gloves that she teasingly peeled off as she sang (sorry, mimed) the bluesy ballad Put the Blame on Mame.
Here’s our pick of Rita’s other great style moments:
This beautiful dress, with its daring, barely-there lace bodice, was seen in the 1942 musical You Were Never Lovelier – Rita’s second movie with Fred Astaire – and had a fluid, flowing skirt which allowed her to move freely.
Famed costume designer Irene put Rita in a shirt-and-short-skirt combo for the dance number, Shorty George, in the same film. We love the brogues – probably chosen because, in heels, Rita would have towered over Fred!
For the 1948 film noir The Lady From Shanghai (in which she starred with her newly ex-husband Orson Welles, pictured), Rita chopped her hair and went platinum blonde but she retained the signature style of Gilda in this slinky, one-strap swimsuit, created for her by her favourite designer, Jean Louis.
Travis Banton designed the elegant wedding gown Rita wore in the gloriously Technicolor musical Cover Girl in 1944.