The stories behind Molly Ringwald’s ‘Pretty in Pink’ costumes

The costumes were an absolutely essential part of Pretty in Pink. It”s right there in the title. And the costumes are what set apart Molly Ringwald”s Andie from the preppy “richie” kids at school, where she never quite fit in.

“She was her own person,” as the film”s costume designer Marilyn Vance put it.

Andie”s style was both cutting edge and retro at the time Pretty in Pink was released in 1986. This Sunday marks 30 years since the John Hughes-penned movie hit theaters (the film is now available on Digital HD including iTunes).

Vance had previously put together a pink-centric ensemble for Ringwald, for The Breakfast Club (one of Vance“s several collaborations with Hughes).

It was the Psychedelic Furs song “Pretty in Pink” that led Hughes to write this story about a pink-loving teenager from the wrong side of the tracks, and the color was very well-suited to the film”s “80s It Girl star.

“The pale pink goes so well with her coloring,” Vance told HitFix. “With her red hair, and she”s very fair.”

Though Andie and Breakfast Club“s Claire share a fondness for pink, they come from totally different worlds. If they”d gone to the same school, the affluent Claire probably would have picked on Andie, who has the creativity to make many of her own clothes and turns to thrift shops to fill her wardrobe – much like Vance did, growing up in Brooklyn.

“My mother would buy me clothing, and I hated her taste,” Vance said. “But I never wanted to hurt her feelings. So I would go to my room and cut everything up and remake it.”

Vance told HitFix about how Andie”s costumes came together in reality much like they did on screen – with DIY projects and thrift shop finds – including the story of that iconic (and divisive) homemade prom dress. Read on for Vance“s memories of creating Andie”s look, and if you want a blast to the past with a re-watch of the film, you can now watch it on sites like iTunes, where it was released in Digital HD this month.