Mamma Mia! has always held a nostalgic place in my heart. After its big screen debut back in 2008, my mom, sister, and I fell in love with its campiness and karaoke-like renditions of classic ABBA songs. In fact, we loved the movie so much that it ran as background noise in our household for years to come.
After watching the sequel, Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again, I was dazzled by the beautiful display of girl power that Lily James, Alexa Davies, and Jessica Wynn dish out while strutting their stuff in go-go boots and jumpers, singing their hearts out. Their choreography gives us the impression that these girls have spent countless hours rehearsing their favorite songs together in the midst of friendship.
For me, this brought back memories of my best friend and I at 8-years-old, methodically rehearsing a cover of Hilary and Haley Duff’s “Our Lips our Sealed” at slumber parties.
In fact, for a movie about Young Donna’s life in the 1970s, it’s remarkably relatable to women in 2018. We see Donna as a strong, educated character who is comfortable with her own sexuality and curious about the world around her. Although Donna knows what she wants out of life, she is still faced with adversities, such as complicated relationships with her friends, suitors, and family … plus the revelation of an unexpected pregnancy.
I believe an important reason we can find Young Donna so relatable has to do with the film’s fashion designer, Michele Clapton. Michele’s opinion on designing outfits for a movie set in the ’70s can be found in this excerpt from an interview with Racked.
“On a film like this, you have to make it appeal to the modern eye. If you make it too period, people will misunderstand what that character’s about.”
Although the film is set in ’70s, most of the fashion is fairly contemporary. Nothing looks or feels dated, which gives us, the audience, full immersion into the story.
In turn, Michele has given us serious fashion inspiration and we’re going to give you insight on all the best looks Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again has to dish out!
The Name of the Game
Mid-way through the movie, we see Young Donna contemplating staying in Greece with a montage of her running through fantasy-like scenery and singing “The Name of the Game.”
In this scene, Donna wears the simple yet elegant combination of a blue knotted shirt and flowy yellow maxi skirt, which is replicated here.
This casual look is easy to pull off, whether you’re running errands, relaxing at the beach, or chilling at a farmers market.
Donna also wears a metal butterfly necklace throughout the entire film. Costume designer Michele notes that this necklace was a vintage find she had replicated in a smaller size. For an easier solution, check Etsy for an assortment of similar styles.
Knowing Me, Knowing You
During Donna’s romantic date with Sam, she is seen wearing a lightweight denim jacket with metallic star patches, plus a denim bralette and structured palazzo pants. Since this was the most retro outfit of the bunch, I decided to recreate it in a modern way.
You may already have a timeless denim jacket in your closet, but if you don’t, check out H&M – the retailer has a huge variety to choose from. Once you’ve found a jacket that fits the way you want it to, add some flair with a patch or two just below the shoulders.
I couldn’t find a star patch I particularly liked, but I found a prickly pear cactus patch from Valley Cruise. In my region of West Texas, prickly pear cacti are especially popular, so this is a fun twist on Donna’s jacket.
Here at CF, we’ve created a ton of outfits with palazzo pants, but this open-leg version is like the palazzo pant’s sexier cousin. Throw on a burgundy bralette and lace-up heels to make this look perfect for a night out.
Why Did It Have to Be Me?
When Donna first arrives in Greece she misses her ferry to the island of Kalokairi due to the attendant trolling on her passport picture. By the way… was no one else bothered by how this attendant guy never aged despite the four-decade time leap from the flashback to present time?! No, just me? Anyway, this is where the free-spirited Donna runs into Bill and tries to convince him to give her a ride to the island.
Donna is dressed in typical tourist fashion, cue the floppy hat (not pictured above because she left the hat at the attendant’s stand), oversized sunglasses, boy shorts, a billowy blouse, and … boots? Okay, the boots aren’t typical, but Donna is her own unique soul.
Glitter In Your Veins
The final look is a mash-up of several influences throughout the Mamma Mia! universe. My first inspiration comes from Cher when she tells Sophie, “You were born with glitter in your veins.” My response? “Well yes, yes I am!” (She was talking to me too, right?!)
Mamma Mia! finales are stock-full of costumes featuring glitter, sequins, and rhinestones, which gives us plenty of fashion eye-candy. Throughout the films, Donna’s preferred performance attire is a combination of jumpsuits and platforms shoes. We see this during Donna’s graduation-speech-turned-song-and-dance, her show at the small Greek restaurant, and in the first movie, at her daughter’s bachelorette party.
Since ABBA and Mamma Mia! are all about being your most fabulous self, I choose this rainbow sequined jumpsuit from Pretty Little Things. Turn the glamour up to eleven with lookalike Doc Martens and star/heart hoop earrings. Don’t forget a faux fur jacket to match the idol that is Meryl Streep.
What Do You Think?
Did you geek out over Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again, too? If so, let us know your thoughts on the movie and it’s fashion. As always, we LOVE to hear from our readers!