50 Interesting Behind-The-Scenes Facts Straight From The Wardrobe Departments Of Iconic TV Shows

Rate this post


Actors get a lot of credit for making our favorite TV shows what they are but the real magic happens behind the scenes. Every person on production we don’t see on camera also puts a ton of thought into creating the characters we love so much. In the case of the wardrobe department, all of that planning makes it onscreen.

CNBC / Via giphy.com

Here are 50 interesting behind-the-scenes facts straight from the wardrobe departments of a bunch of iconic TV shows:

"Schitt's Creek"

Pop TV / Via Netflix


Along with being a co-creator and star, Dan Levy also supervised the wardrobe department.

David wears a sweater with a kilt

Pop TV / Via Netflix

He worked alongside longtime wardrobe designer Debra Hanson.


Catherine O’Hara suggested the British heiress / high fashion icon Daphne Guinness as inspiration for Moira Rose’s unique, campy style.

Daphne wears a structured dress and impossibly high platform heels

David M. Benett / Dave Benett / Getty Images

She told the Los Angeles Times, “Otherwise [I] just stood there while Debra and her team and Daniel put me together in the most beautiful, formidable, and hysterical way.”


The wardrobe team had a saying when it came to Moira’s outfits: More is more.

Moira wears a long dress, gloves, a huge diamond necklace, and a curly wig

Pop TV / Via Netflix

“Fittings with Catherine were always fun because we could really experiment. And the weirder things got, the better she looked,” Levy told the Los Angeles Times.


The show used the Rose family’s designer clothing in order to “continually [remind] our audience where these people came from.”

Alexis's expensive white outfit is a stark contrast to the dingy wall of the motel behind her

Pop TV / Via Netflix

Levy told Vulture, “The juxtaposition of designer clothes against the backdrop of this town is able to tell a story. When we starting putting the show together, one of the fundamental building blocks of the wardrobe was making sure we’re not only creating an aspirational aesthetic, but also creating dimensions to these characters. Any way we can squeeze as much character out of these people as possible, the better.”


Originally, Dan Levy wanted Moira’s finale look to be a black dress, but Debra Hanson thought it wasn’t celebratory enough and looked for white and cream outfits instead.

Moira dressed like a pope to officiate David's wedding

Pop TV / Via Netflix

She told the Los Angeles Times, “While I looked for something else, a small image of a McQueen popped up; it was white and looked like an ecclesiastical bishop’s robe. I went, ‘Oh, my God.’ It was just gorgeous.”


NBC / Via youtube.com


The style aesthetic that wardrobe designer Debra McGuire created was actually the opposite of the baggy clothes that were considered trendy at the time.

Phoebe wears a fitted shirt and skirt

David Hume Kennerly / Getty Images

She told Vogue India, “Oversized unstructured silhouettes were trending back then, but that was too unflattering for television. Also, I did not want the characters to only be in jeans all the time. New York was changing and I wanted them to reflect that.”


She used some of her personal clothes to dress Rachel Green, such as her hot pink faux fur coat and Missoni trousers.

Rachel wearing the stylist's coat

Nbc / NBCUniversal via Getty Images

Rachel even sported several monochrome outfits from the stylist’s clothing line.


Executive producer Marta Kauffman told McGuire that the characters should be in jeans because they were hanging out in New York, but she disagreed and decided to go for looks that were aspirational instead.

they're all hanging out but no one is wearing jeans

Getty Images

She told High Snobiety, “It was all about texture and color and staying true to a New York palette. It was very black, white, gray, with hits of color.”


A lot of Chandler’s outfits were custom-made and his style was inspired by the 1940s.

Nbc / NBCU Photo Bank / NBCUniversal via Getty Images

“He was the one character that made sense to bring in some inspiration from the past. I did that certainly with the girls a lot but he was the only male character that I could sort of really play with that,” McGuire told High Snobiety.


McGuire assigned each of the main characters their own palette — the women were divided into colors and the men were divided into textures.

Nbc / NBCUniversal via Getty Images

She told the Guardian, “Monica was black, gray, white, burgundy; Rachel was blues and greens… Ross was tweedy, Chandler had a lot of vintage and racing stripe shirts, Joey had leather jackets, then later sweaters and chenille. Phoebe was in patterns.”

"The Good Place"

NBC / Via Netflix


In the first two seasons, the characters never wore reds or pinks in “the Good Place” because “the Good Place is green for good.”

Chidi wearing a green sweater

NBC / Via Netflix

Costume director Kirston Mann told GQ, “Color-wise, we stick to a certain pallette to separate ‘the real world’ from the Good Place.”


The blue and yellow chevron pattern from the pilot episode is symbolic of the Good Place and its points system because, when combined, those colors make green.

Tahani and Michael are confused why they're suddenly wearing chevron

NBC / Via Netflix

“That’s how I talked myself into really loving that kind of print everyone is wearing in quite a few scenes,” Mann told GQ.


After the original neighborhood dissolved, however, “all bets [were] off,” so the wardrobe designers tried to have “a more ordinary palette.”

the whole group is wearing brighter colors

NBC / Via Netflix

Mann told Fashionista, “We’re trying to have a palette that reflects Earth and just what it would be.”


In Season 3, when Eleanor was back on Earth, they began dressing her “like a cute student” to show that she was learning how to become a good person.

she evolved from a slouchy style to a cozy academia vibe

NBC / Via Netflix

“She became a person who didn’t have a big chip on her shoulder. She wanted to learn to be good and to be a student,” Mann told Fashionista.


A lot of Jason’s costumes included teal, gold, black, and white to reflect his love of the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Jason's dance crew outfit is Jaguar colors

NBC / Via Netflix

Mann told Fashionista, “[The Jacksonville Jaguars] actually embraced Jason as a fan… They’ve invited [Manny Jacinto] to a few games — in real life, not in fiction.” 

"The Office"

NBC / Via youtube.com


Costume designer Carey Bennett had never worked in a traditional office so she found a local paper company in the phone book, called them up, and invited herself to visit so she could research.

Jim and Dwight at their desks

Nbc / ©NBC/Courtesy Everett Collection

On the Office Ladies podcast, she said, “The owner was so darling. And I just went in there and was very respectful and was like, ‘This is what I’m doing. I’m just trying to get a vibe and see what goes on here and see if I can kind of glean some details that maybe I wouldn’t have normally known.”

She took tons of pictures of the office and the employees, and put them into a slideshow called “Welcome to the Working Week” for her first big production meeting.


She wanted to keep the characters’ personal styles realistic so she stuck to an imperfect, dated style.

Jim and Pam waiting for Michael

Nbc / NBCUniversal via Getty Images

She imagined that Pam shopped at Gap and Old Navy while Jim borrowed professional-looking clothes from his father.


The key to creating Angela’s signature look was taking fashionable clothes and putting them “in all the wrong combinations.”

Angela layers a V-neck sweater over a turtleneck

Nbc / NBCUniversal via Getty Images

A lot of her outfits were purchased off-the-rack from then-trendy stores such as Juicy Couture, Bebe, and J.Crew.


Dwight’s iconic mustard shirt was a “good luck charm” carried over from Bennett’s work on Scrubs.

Dwight wears the cat pee–colored, dingy collared shirt

Nbc / ©NBC/Courtesy Everett Collection

On the Office Ladies podcast, she said, “The wonderful director who pulled me onto that project, Adam Bernstein, he has a thing about mustard shirts. And he was like, ‘We just need a mustard shirt. It’s just important.’ And now of course, that show took off. So now I try to put a mustard shirt — like it’s just my thing.”


Bennett used Ryan’s suits to reflect his climb from intern to corporate manager, upgrading him from off-the-rack suits to custom-made designer ones.

he went from ill-fitting suits to well-tailored designer

NBC / Via youtube.com

She told Below the Line, “The suits fit [B.J. Novak] perfectly.”


FX / Via Netflix


In order to create period-accurate pieces, costume designer Analucia McGorty consulted with her close friend who’s an archivist at Condé Nast.

Elektra and her friends watch from the sidelines

Eric Liebowitz / ©FX / Courtesy Everett Collection

She told Pop Sugar, “I also go to the library and look up what was popular at the time. So what the films were that were popular, or what books were popular at that time, what theater in New York was popular — anything that would influence the fashion world. I’m really interested in seeing what that is about.”


Elektra’s Marie Antoinette look from Season 2 was designed to be “something that we’ve never seen on television before.”

Elektra's courtly gown has a birdcage as a skirt

FX / Via Netflix

“The most fun part of our show is to have the costume be so loud, being able to do things that aren’t normally seen on TV and aren’t normally part of a story. That’s a blessing,” McGorty told Pop Sugar.


McGorty gave swatches of fabric from the characters’ outfits to the director of photography and the grip and electric departments to help them get the perfect shot.

a striped two-piece suit on the dance floor

Eric Liebowitz / ©FX / Courtesy Everett Collection

“It works so great because we all care so much. We all want it to be the best it could possibly be,” she told W Magazine.


For Season 3, McGorty used a few pieces from her personal wardrobe to dress Pray Tell because both she and Billy Porter wear the same size.

Pray wears a silk scarf and gorgeous jacket

FX / Via youtube.com

She told W Magazine, “I never think about gender when I’m dressing him. I almost dress Billy like I dress myself.”


She included a red fringe heart in the outfit Candy wears in her final ballroom scene as a “love letter” to the character.

her dress's sweetheart neckline forms a heart

FX / Via Netflix

She told the Hollywood Reporter, “I don’t [even] know what it was, but it was just such a happy and beautiful costume.”


Netflix / Via Netflix


It took 5 months and 238 people to create all 5,000 costumes.

Daphne and the Duke

Liam Daniel / ©Netflix / Courtesy Everett Collection

In total, the team created 7,500 different wardrobe pieces.


The style of the costumes was inspired by Regency England, but the color palette was borrowed from the 1950s and ’60s.

a mix of bold hues and soft pastels

Liam Daniel / ©Netflix / Courtesy Everett Collection

Costume designer Ellen Mirojnick told Vogue, “The Christian Dior: Designer of Dreams exhibition at [London’s] Victoria & Albert Museum provided a wealth of inspiration. We looked at Dior dresses, from the New Look [1947] to the present day.”


In order to modernize the dresses, the team “paid a lot of attention to the scooped necklines and how they fit the bust,” instead of sticking to the straight necklines that are typically seen in period pieces.

Daphne's dress has a deep scoop neckline

Liam Daniel / ©Netflix / Courtesy Everett Collection

“This show is sexy, fun, and far more accessible than your average restrained period drama and it’s important for the openness of the necklines to reflect that,” Mirojnick told Vogue.


The Featheringtons wore bright, “overly citrus” colors because Portia “wants those girls to be seen.”

they dress in bold, bright colors

Liam Daniel / ©Netflix / Courtesy Everett Collection

Mirojnick told Vogue, “They’re bolder, brighter, and more brazen than everyone else, and everything is overly embellished. They just don’t know any better.”


The color palette of Daphne’s wardrobe got darker over time to signify her aging.

Daphne starts wearing darker colors as she gets older

Liam Daniel / ©Netflix / Courtesy Everett Collection

“She begins as a porcelain doll and becomes a woman,” Mirojnick told Vogue

"Never Have I Ever"

Netflix / Via Netflix


Initially, Kamala’s wardrobe consisted entirely of American-style clothes but at Richa Moorjani’s suggestion, she began to wear “casual, flowy Indian pants or tops to incorporate her culture.”

Kamala wears a casual Indian top at home

©Netflix / Courtesy Everett Collection

She told Pop Sugar, “It truly feels like a blessing to be a part of a show with such a synergistic environment and where I have the opportunity to add value and authenticity to my character by infusing my real-life cultural background.”


The cosplay outfit that Kamala wore to the video game convention with her coworkers was custom-made by wardrobe designer Salvador Pérez Jr.

her costume resembles a flight attendant from "The Jetsons"

©Netflix / Courtesy Everett Collection

“It’s hilarious and painful at the same time to see her in that outfit, and we had so much fun putting that look together behind the scenes,” Moorjani told Pop Sugar.


When Pérez was designing the clothes that Devi models for Rebecca, creator Mindy Kaling told him to “think like a 15-year-old teen girl.”

Netflix / Via Netflix

“I designed very simple and sweet pieces that a teen girl could have made herself,” he said on Instagram.


All of Rebecca’s designs were constructed from fabric that was leftover from Pérez’s work on The Mindy Project.

another tweet heart dress, but this time with matching boots

Netflix / Via Netflix

“I think Target should market the collection,” he joked on Instagram.


Poorna Jagannathan helps source clothes for Nalini’s wardrobe.

Isabella B. Vosmikova / ©Netflix / Courtesy Everett Collection

She told Vogue India, “Often, immigrants on American television are portrayed as dowdy and cheap. But the creators of the show and the costume designer, Salvador Pérez, really envisioned Nalini as a professional woman who knows how to put herself together.”

"30 Rock"

NBC / Via Netflix


Costume designer Tom Broecker guest-starred as the TGS costume designer.

he played Lee in the pilot

NBC / Via Netflix

He previously worked with Tina Fey on Saturday Night Live.


In the first season, Liz Lemon’s wardrobe reflected her struggle to find both herself and where she fit at work, evolving from jeans and blazers to skirts and heels.

she went from slouchy cardigans to floral dresses

NBC / Via Netflix

Broecker told the Hollywood Reporter, “At first, she’s really trying to identify with the writers … There’s also a very strong comfort factor with her because of the long work hours. But then she met a guy and started to investigate her own life, and we began loosening up her silhouette and her color palette…”


According to Broecker, Jenna dressed “more like a sitcom actress” than a sketch comedy performer.

she wore fancy, designer outfits

Nbc / ©NBC/Courtesy Everett Collection

He told Fashionista, “We sort of took a lot of liberty. Having worked with lots of sketch comedy actresses, what they wear to rehearsal is not what they wear on television. … We’d set it up, ‘Oh, she’s coming from the Regis and Kelly show. That’s why she’s more dressed up now.'”


The chicken suit was initially a nod to an axed TGS skit.

Tracy wore a chicken suit

Nbc / ©NBC/Courtesy Everett Collection

Broecker wore the suit himself for a shoot with Entertainment Tonight.


When the show ended, Alec Baldwin “wrote a big check to NBC” and bought all of Jack’s suits.

he played the big boss

Nbc / ©NBC/Courtesy Everett Collection

Broecker told Zap2It, “He likes his clothes and wants to look good.”


The CW / Via Netflix


At Cole Sprouse’s request, Jughead’s beanie was modified to be less slouchy at the top.

the beanie is tight and snug on his head

Dean Buscher/© The CW Network / courtesy Everett Collection

The wardrobe team commissioned a local knitter to make it happen and create several more copies of the beanie.


Costume designer Rebekka Sorensen-Kjelstrup sourced six different spider brooches from vintage shops and Etsy to make sure Cheryl had plenty to choose from.

she always wore a spider pin in the first season

Diyah Pera/© The CW Network / courtesy Everett Collection

“Spiders — it’s a symbol of power and growth and feminine energy, and it has that mystery to it, which Cheryl has,” she told Vanity Fair


Sorensen-Kjelstrup always focuses on the upper half of a character’s outfit, adding plenty of accessories, so that their individual aesthetics stand out in a close-up shot.

Veronica's pearl necklace

Cw Network / ©CW Network/Courtesy Everett Collection

She told Fashionista, “Either (adding) Veronica’s pearls or detail of the collar, I make sure the upper half is really good, so that we can feature their style and their look.”


Each character’s look is based on “either a composite or a decade of the actual Archie comics.”

Hermione and Veronica

Katie Yu / ©The CW / Courtesy: Everett Collection

For example, Betty and Archie are based on the ’50s, while Veronica and Hermione are based on the ’40s.

However, they’ve also been modernized so that “nobody is head-to-toe running around in ’70s or ’40s [looks].”


Sorensen-Kjelstrup’s daughter reads fan theories about the characters’ outfits on Tumblr and shares them with her mother.

Betty and Alice

Katie Yu / ©The CW / Courtesy: Everett Collection

The designer told Vanity Fair, “She said, ‘Oh, there’s speculation about the pins and there’s speculation about the colors.’ She just showed me one day, and I was like, ‘Whoa, whoa.’ She was like, ‘Yeah, this is what I read about Riverdale.’”

"Game of Thrones"

HBO / Via youtube.com


After Sansa Stark arrived in King’s Landing, she traded in the blue color palette of her homeland for mauve to help her avoid scrutiny.

Sansa at home versus at King's Landing

HBO / Via youtube.com

Wardrobe designer Michele Clapton told Vox, “I think mauve is a color that hovers, so she’s in mauve for a long time, trying to be invisible and not trying to express herself, except through her embroidery.”


Daenerys Targaryen’s Meereen dress from Season 4 was “one of the most difficult dresses to make” through the series’s run.

long dress with large cutouts

HBO / Via youtube.com

“It had to look effortless yet the structure to do this with so little coverage has to be so precisely cut. It also had to give Emilia the support and confidence to wear it,” Clapton told Entertainment Weekly.


The actors wore temperature-changing vests under their costumes to keep them comfortable.

Jon Snow

HBO / Via youtube.com

“We could pump [in] hot water in winter and icy cold water in summer,” Clapton told Entertainment Weekly.


Samwell Tarly’s cloak was made out of an IKEA rug because, in the beginning, the wardrobe designers didn’t have a lot of money to work with.

big, fluffy cloak

HBO / Via youtube.com

Clapton told Fashionista, “There’s an Ikea right next to the studios in Belfast, and I was browsing there one day trying to buy something for my apartment and I went, ‘Wow look at these amazing wool rugs!’ Our breakdown [team] attacked it and shredded it and waxed it and dusted it and then we added two leather straps.”


And finally, Daenerys’s complex white coat was meant to mirror the wardrobe of her vile brother Viserys.

both had wide shoulders and high collars

HBO / Via youtube.comyoutube.com

It was also designed with wide shoulders to help give it shape. 

Clapton told Vanity Fair, “It is so easy to lose the person in the layers, especially someone as small as Emilia… It would be impossible to use a long fur on her.”


Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The reCAPTCHA verification period has expired. Please reload the page.