Seattle native Rebecca Luke and I sit on the panel of the Independent Designer Runway Show together with a few other members of the local fashion and style industry, but every so often during our check-in and mentoring meetings, Luke isn't there because she's in New York dressing celebrities and indie actors. It's been fun hearing about her projects over the last few years—especially when she was in the throes of a Seattle-based film called Lucky Them.
I've been thinking for awhile now that Seattle needs another Singles—and we certainly need a great film moment to eclipse the taint of that awful Sleepless in Seattle thing that somehow manages to keep coming up in conversation with strangers on airplanes, proving the world still sees us through an outdated, un-styled Meg Ryan lens.
Will Lucky Them have a positive lasting impact on Seattle's reputation? Hard to say, but Roger Ebert and the New York Post are both enthusiastically behind the "rock solid" cast and "charming" storyline.
The film is out now—you can see it at the Northwest Film Forum between Friday, June 13 and Thursday, June 19—and I had a chance to check in with Luke about how she put the characters looks together.
How did you frame the idea of Seattle style as you were conceptualizing the look of your characters? Luke: It was tricky since the film is current day. I wanted to showcase the great Northwest style that isn't always acknowledged; there's style in Seattle beyond “grunge" and I wanted everyone to see it. My opportunity to show this style was with our lead protagonist, played by Toni Collette—the perfect canvas.
What did you need to convey with Collette's character, who is a rock journalist?
With her look in the film we took a damaged, lost person and revealed her vulnerability and beauty. Ellie Krug was just “cool” and projected a gorgeousness reflected in her wardrobe. Layers and warm tones were the foundation for all characters. Warm tones allowed me to show the "now" Seattle. Typically, cool tones are how I have always indicated the Northwest. While I still gave a nod to typical Seattle using plaid, vintage leather, and Subpop gear, the ease and modern fit was how I tried to keep it fresh and modern.
Our involvement with IDRS gives us increased intimacy with the best Seattle designers. Who were you able to bring into the movie?
My priority was to feature pieces sourced from the Northwest. With a collaboration involving Carol McClellan to create Ellie’s leather coat, to including Seattle designers such as Masha Osoianu and Martha Driver of Rock Star Jewelry, while sourcing from a range of places like Red Light to Barneys NY at Pacific Place, it all felt just right.