How ''Friends With Benefits'' costume designer Renee Ehrlich Kalfus constructed the star's style from head to toe
For his first leading-man gig, Timberlake morphed into Dylan, a magazine designer with a penchant for tailored suits and stylish tees, in Friends With Benefits (in theaters now). ”We went for a hip New York look,” says the film’s costume designer, Renee Ehrlich Kalfus, who took snaps of Manhattan street style and, with JT, visited GQ‘s offices for inspiration. Together they decided on an updated but classic style for the character. ”He looks like a guy who’s accessible but you could strive to be like him,” she says. ”Plus, almost anything I put on Justin looked fabulous.”
You may not expect hair as short as Timberlake’s to require much upkeep — but it did. Dark hair can read as flat on HD film, so hairstylist Adruitha Lee highlighted Timberlake’s locks every 10 days, and kept his famously curly mane in shape with a slew of Bumble and bumble. products, including Sumotech ($25).
For the central hue, Kalfus was inspired by the pop star himself. ”Justin has these great eyes, and a blue palette brought out his baby blues,” she says. ”And the colors are so New York.”
”He’s a guy who could have a blog and tell other guys what to do,” says Kalfus of Dylan’s sharp style sense. For his work wardrobe, that translated to slim-fit pieces from brands like Dior, Thom Brown, and Save Khaki. When it came to more casual ensembles, Kalfus turned to Gant, John Varvatos, and Barneys Co-Op.
The art director wears a few signature accessories throughout the film, including a tie bar and Tiffany’s engine-turned slide belt buckle ($225) monogrammed with the character’s initials.
No detail was too small for the actor to weigh in on: ”Justin wanted a big, graphic watch,” Kalfus says about the Breitling Chronomat 44 timepiece ($8,005).
Dylan’s relationship may be casual, but his footwear — the Oxford lace-up — is decidedly formal. ”It looked sharp,” Kalfus says. ”I think the way he wears it, it’s a slightly ironic twist to a man’s dress shoe.”