Unravelling secrets of man who dressed the stars – Orry-Kelly

IT’S A mystery that involves Australia’s most prolific Academy Award winner, a missing manuscript and the Hollywood star who was once his lover.

While few Australians have heard of the costume designer Orry-Kelly, he won three Oscars in the 1950s – for An American in Paris, Les Girls and Some Like It Hot – and was nominated for Gypsy.

He also worked on such classic movies as Casablanca, Oklahoma!, The Maltese Falcon and Arsenic and Old Lace, designing dresses for the likes of Marilyn Monroe, Bette Davis, Katharine Hepburn and Ava Gardner.

via Unravelling secrets of man who dressed the stars.



  1. That is such a great photo of Tony Curtis. Love it. I guess it never occurred to me that their outfits for Some Like It Hot would have been designed with the same care as outfits for actual women, but of course they would have. Silly me.

  2. Isn’t Tony sly looking? I love it too:
    “Orry-Kelly did the dresses for Marilyn Monroe, and Jack and I were going to wear clothes out of Western Costumes. So I went to Western Costumes and they fitted us out in these dresses that belonged to Loretta Young and Kate Smith and Debbie Reynolds and Lola Momez, they took all our measurements… and none of them fit. They all puckered tight up and I didn’t like them, I didn’t like the idea that these women had worn these dresses, so I went to Billy Wilder, I said, “Billy can’t you have Orry-Kelly make our dresses?” He says, “All right, let him make your dresses.” I knew it was rare for Orry-Kelly to do guy’s dresses, so that was really nice.” Tony Curtis


    what a brilliant shot! in the long cinematic tradition of men wearing women’s clothes, I think Some Like It Hot holds the crown forever.

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