May 2014 Club


Amélie Poulain, played by Audrey Tautou, is a charming, introverted soul who has difficulty forming relationships and prefers the company of outcasts.

Brought up by a neurotic mother and a cold fish of a father, she is home-educated and has had a sheltered upbringing leading to a vivid fantasy life. She despises underdogs being treated badly.

Having discovered a small tin box of childhood treasures in the skirting board of her Paris apartment on the day of Princess Diana's death, she successfully tracks down the now middle-aged owner, secretly returning the box to him. Having seen his delight at the rekindled memories, she makes it her life's mission to carry out secret deeds to make people happy.
Partly because of her shyness, she is happy to stay anonymous and sees herself as a Zorro figure.

There are some beautiful sepia-soaked scenes of Paris and a wonderful opening sequence in which we are introduced to the many characters via their likes and dislikes. Some clever, whimsical techniques are used such as the four booth photos which come alive and start talking. In another scene, we can see Amélie's supposedly defective heart beating in her chest.
If you believe in karma, this could be the film for you.

Colourway inspiration

The film featured some very prominent colours and styling - emerald green and a washed out vintage red with sparks of mustard featured throughout. But in this instance, I decided not to go for a direct interpretation, given that it's edging towards summer here. I wanted to take the colours up a few tones.

So instead of an emerald green for the semi-solid colourway, I opted for the sophisticated Parisienne green that you see on the signs for the Metro around the Montmartre area and which is used on the Metro trains themselves.

Garden Gnome
For the variegated version, I took the Parisienne green and added a muted red, which on the soft Enchant yarn base, has become a muted rose pink. The dyeing technique I used encouraged the dye to separate out, so there should be randomly quirkly spots and dots of mustard and grey. Amélie's father's gnome plays a fairly prominent role in the film, so I've called it Garden Gnome.

The yarn base was Enchant - baby alpaca, silk and cashmere.