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Hollywood fashion designer Edith Head (Edith Claire Posener), whose movie costuming skills brought her eight Academy Awards and thirty-five Oscar nominations, was born in San Bernardino, California on this date in 1897. She borrowed a fellow art student’s drawings to land a job as costume sketch artist at Paramount Pictures in 1924, and began designing costumes for silent films. Head remained at Paramount for 43 years before moving to Universal Studios in 1967, along with Alfred Hitchcock, with whom she had worked extensively. Among the women she costumed were Mae West in She Done Him Wrong, 1933; Dorothy Lamour in The Hurricane, 1937; Paulette Goddard in The Cat and the Canary, 1939; Veronica Lake in Sullivan’s Travels, 1941; Barbara Stanwyck in Double Indemnity, 1944; Ginger Rogers in Lady in the Dark, 1944; Ingrid Bergman in Notorious, 1946; Loretta Young in The Farmer’s Daughter, 1947; Bette Davis in All About Eve, 1950; Hedy Lamarr and Angela Lansbury in Samson and Delilah, 1949; Gloria Swanson in Sunset Boulevard, 1950; Elizabeth Taylor in A Place in the Sun, 1951; Audrey Hepburn in Roman Holiday, 1953; Grace Kelly in Rear Window, 1954; and dozens of others. To see a section of Susan Clausen’s performance, “A Conversation with Edith Head,” look below.
“Some people need sequins, others don’t.” —Edith Head