Nominated for Best Picture, Best Adaptation of a Screenplay, and Best Actress – Carey Mulligan
Coming of age tales are often so compelling because of their ability to conjure emotions that are much better as nostalgia than as recent experiences. Who doesn’t love the adventure and camaraderie of Stand by Me, the fidgety magnetism of a first crush in My Girl, or the desperate game of social-circle chess in Mean Girls? Such stories are equally endearing, though occasionally more subversive on the other side of the pond.
Two of my favorite British teenage narratives are the film adaptation of Beautiful Thing and the controversial series Queer as Folk (which inspired Showtime‘s American version). Charlie Hunnam, who currently stars in Sons of Anarchy on FX, played a teenager entering a lascivious affair with an older man. Hunnam’s cautious, rabbit eyed look allows the audience some semblance of peace knowing he at least his guard up. In “An Education” Carey Mulligan’s young Jenny throws such caution to the wind.
Jenny, a British teen in the 1950’s rejects the traditional female archetypes attributed to her mother, her teacher, and an unscholarly socialite in order to explore the decadence of Paris, concerts, fine dining, and dating an older man. Jenny meets Peter Sarsgaard’s sheep skin clad David with such open minded faith that I’ve since vowed that if I ever have kids, the first rule for dating my teenage daughter will be that guys with vowels repeated in their last name are automatically given a restraining order (Mark-Paul Gosselaar that means you too).
In spite of the sometimes heavier subject matter, it’s hard not to notice the many great performances, the revealing cinematography, and the versatile beauty of Carey Mulligan. With her hair down, perfect skin, and uber wearable school uniform, she looks like the quintessential girl next door. With her hair pulled back, makeup done up, clad in a delicate beige party dress, she so easily carries off sophisticated ingenue she could pass for Audrey Hepburn’s granddaughter.
If you’re attending an Oscars party this Sunday and want to show your support for Carey Mulligan and An Education, why not go all out French chic?
Start by capturing Mulligan’s timeless vintage look with a French touch using just a few key products. The idea is to look dressed up, but with a youthful Parisian ease. After applying undereye concealer and basic face makeup, trace the upper lashes with a black liquid liner, sweeping up at the corner. Try Lancôme’s Artliner in Noir which has a thin felt tipped pen applicator that creates a thinner line with a soft touch and a thicker line with a firmer touch. Next, capture Mulligan’s bright eyed innocence using Virtuose mascara in Black, also by Lancôme. Use the curved brush to focus on the outer lashes and get the most out of the lash curling formula. Finally, get the same cherry pout with Rouge Volupte by Yves Saint Laurent in Red Muse. Die hard beauty seekers will want a matte finish for a historically accurate French 50’s look, but will have to wait for the debut of Color Design Lip in Red Haute later this month.
To really dress the part, MyFashionPlate.com stylist Sasha Gold recommends this chic 1950’s inspired dress by Dior. “It’s great for every body shape and the lilac color looks great on almost any skin tone. Update it with statement jewelry or keep it classic with smaller pieces.” The design is as clever as Mulligan herself in the way it manages to “demurely scream” I could have danced all night.
Competition for best actress is fierce this year, but we’ll have to watch to see if newcomer Carrie Mulligan will share in similar freshman success as Marlee Matin did for Children of a Lesser God. Either way, Mulligan will no doubt look angelic on the red carpet. Dressed for the part, you too could help celebrate her joie de vivre!
Get personal fashion advice from Sasha Gold by contacting her on MyFashionPlate.com.
Call Lancome – The Boutique to pre-order Color Design Lip in Red Haute at 212-362-4858
ndrew Sotomayor is a celebrity makeup artist in New York who’s worked with Juliette Binoche, Kerry Washington, Saffron Burrows, Rose Byrne, Justin Kirk, Jonathan Groff and champion boxer Andre Berto. His clients have appeared on Project Runway, The Today Show, The CBS Early Show, Good Day New York, and CNN. He’s created the makeup for Victoria Beckham’s denim and eyewear look books, and assisted on fashion shows for Dior, Diesel, Marchesa, and Project Runway. Magazines like Marie Claire, Shape, InStyle, Glamour, People, and numerous blogs have interviewed him, and he’s appeared on television for Access Hollywood. Andrew leads makeup artistry workshops for the students at The High School of Fashion Industries. See his work at DramaFreeMakeup.com