Terry Dresbach earned an Emmy nomination for supervising the creation of a staggering 10,000 costumes for season two of “Outlander.” In the sophomore edition of this Starz period drama, Claire (Caitriona Balfe) and Jamie (Sam Heughan) leave Scotland to travel to France in time of the reign of Louis XV. While there, they became enmeshed in various plots at the royal court.
As Dresbach reveals to Gold Derby editor Tom O’Neil (watch above), “There’s no store that sells 18th century fabrics, so we had to make them all. It was a remarkable endeavor.” However, rather than simply recreate the look of the French court, she incorporated other elements to reflect the nature of the show. “The heart of our story is about time travel,” Dresbach explains. “It’s about a woman from the Forties who travels back to the 18th century, so we looked to what was happening in the 1940s. Interestingly enough, they were looking backwards to the 18th century.”
To that end, when Claire needs to be dressed ornately for various royal events at Versailles, her gowns “are reminiscent of the great designers of the 1940s.” For example, she is seen in a brilliant red dress that echoes the revolutionary “New Look” of French designer Christian Dior. Those subtleties impressed the costume designers branch of the TV academy.
Dresbach, who shared in an Emmy win in 2004 for the costumes of “Carnivale, is nominated alongside “Outlander” assistant costume designers Nadine Powell and Elle Wilson, and costume supervisor Anna Lau. They contend for Best Costumes For A Period/Fantasy Series, Limited Series Or Movie against teams from the dramas “Downton Abbey” and “Game of Thrones” and the limited series “The People v. O.J. Simpson” and “Roots.” The quartet also vied at the recent Costume Design Guild awards in the period series category, which was won by “The Knick” crew.
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