Anatomy of a Costume: Josh Hutcherson's 'Hunger Games' Jacket
Cerre, the L.A.-based brand behind 150 pieces of "Catching Fire" costumery, tells us how Peeta's leather bomber jacket came to be.
The latest Hunger Games hoopla is well underway with Catching Fire's London world premiere on Monday. And this time around, fashion is playing an even more integral part in the franchise's marketing efforts with the launch of a Lionsgate-underwritten Capitol Couture fashion website (helmed by Rachel Zoe and Janie Bryant book collaborator Monica Corocoran Harel) as well as film costume designer Trish Summerville's foray into branded product with a movie-inspired line debuting on Net-a-Porter next Friday.
Rounding out the film's style sphere is Cerre, the husband-and-wife run, L.A.-based label responsible for 150 pieces of Catching Fire costumery — including a two-tone, forest green leather bomber worn by Josh Hutcherson's Peeta.
The duo, comprising Clayton and Flavie Webster, who founded their line in 2005 and are known for expertly finished leather pieces (Dakota Fanning and Emma Stone are fans), started their collaboration with Summerville in 2009, just before the costume designer signed on to outfit David Fincher's The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo. Summerville ended up tapping the couple to pull wardrobe for Rooney Mara and Robin Wright. And when it came time for the Costume Designers Guild winner to create a sleek, postmodern wardrobe for The Hunger Games' second installment, the Websters were again called into action.
Since the jacket — which, like most of the brand's Catching Fire work, was handmade in its owner-designed Melrose Avenue atelier — was a natural fit within Cerre's collection of sculptural leather wares, it received a color change (from big-screen green to black) and hit the selling floor at $1,850.
"For all of our men's clothes, I want it to be a nonseasonal look. I almost prefer the idea of a uniform," the male Webster says. "So the jacket we ended up making for the movie was a really good fit. It doesn't change."
Webster shared how the piece came to life: a specific baby calfskin, hidden geometric details and a hand-stitched matte silk lining that's almost worth turning inside out.
1. The Angled Pockets
Though they look like they're geometric in shape, the bomber's slanted pockets are actually somewhat of an illusion. "I did it to balance out the piece when you wear it open, when they line up straight. It's also just a design choice that Trish and I thought was cool."
2. The Leather
Webster met his wife in 2000 while both were living and working as models in Paris, and it was during that time they discovered a tannery on the outskirts of Milan whose services they still use today. For both the retail jacket and Peeta's movie version, the Websters went with supple baby calfskin. "It's thinner and stronger than lambskin. But it's almost like a fabric — it's more drapey but wears more naturally. We use a tanning process that allows for a little bit more character to come through the leather, so you can actually see a lot more of the natural grain."
3. The Zipper
Think a zipper is just a zipper? Think again. "We work with this Italian zipper company. They're pretty much the most expensive zippers you can get," Webster chuckles. "We always try to use a zipper that's the same color as the leather we're using. And I love this one because the teeth are square and Flavie and I are very particular about things like that. I hate how some zippers have sort of a bulbous end to them. But these are completely rectangular."
4. The Collar -- or Lack Thereof
"That's what Trish wanted," Clayton Webster says of the outerwear's cool, collarless look. "That was one of her main directions — she wanted a bomber." But the male Webster, who lives in Los Feliz with his wife and their cat, Chompy, had his sights set on a clean men's motorcycle jacket long before a Hunger Games contract was signed. "I'd been thinking about a jacket like that — a plain moto — but I didn't get spurred into doing it until Trish wanted something like that."
$1,850 at Cerre, 8920 Melrose Ave, West Hollywood, 310-385-9051, cerre.com