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Work in Other Places: Interviews, Fashion History and in Print!

16 May

Activity here at TV Ate My Wardrobe has been a little light on content recently, there is a good reason for this. At the start of April I started contributing to SYFY FANGRRLS, which has been keeping me the best kind of busy. So what I wanted to do is share what I have been writing there, as well as some other exciting work related news.

For SYFY FANGRRLS I have written a range of ‘Geekouture’ pieces ranging from news stories, red carpet round-ups, costume designer interviews and deep dives into fashion and costume history. It has been really wonderful to tackle the impact of clothing on film, television, the runway, red carpet and the items that could end up hanging in your own wardrobe.

In other news, for Little White Lies I contributed to the 75th issue. My first ever print article! Yes, I am almost cried when I saw it in the shop. This is a magazine I have been reading for 13 years (issue 4 with the Jarhead cover is the first one I bought). And I got to write about one of my favorite films; Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. This also happened to be the movie I wrote about as part of my Masters application. A full circle moment.

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Here is a round-up of my recent work at SYFY FANGRRLS:

-A Series of Unfortunate Events has some of the boldest costuming on TV, I spoke to Cynthia Summers about the second season, sustainable fashion and what influenced her work on this show.

– Sneakers that encourage play and come with a cape! Oh to be 8 years old again.

– The best in space explorer graphic tees from Gucci to Topshop. Plus I’ve got you covered for Solo opening weekend if you want to wear Lando on your shirt.

– I have been writing about Ane Crabtree’s incredible costume design since Masters of Sex. I’ve interviewed her on a number of occasions and I leapt at the chance to talk to her about season 2 of The Handmaid’s Tale.

– One regular column that has been missing from TV Ate My Wardrobe is “Out of the Box,” I am sorry to have missed so many incredible looks recently particularly all those ladysuits at Cannes, but at SYFY FANGRRLS I have got a new Look of the Week column. Looking to the past and present, I have so far celebrated Cheryl Blossom’s very specific River Vixen ensemble in Riverdale, Maggie Q as the agent I most want to see return to Mission Impossible and the women of Timeless serving up their best ’80s government worker outfits.

– Fall/Winter ’18 runway fashion featured several collections influenced by sci-fi. I took a look at how MetropolisThe Fifth Element and ’60s B Movies were some of the most notable reference points, as well as the long relationship between fashion and fantasy.

– The Final Girl trope isn’t just about the rules of slasher movie survival; it is also about how they dress.

– You may have noticed a lack of Met Gala coverage in these parts. That is because I covered this huge fashion event for FANGRRLS. Find your genre faves including cast members from Black PantherStar Wars, Game of Thrones and Westworld here. This is my favorite Met Gala in years. And this tweet about Zendaya’s amazing very Joan of Arc ensemble also went viral in a way none of my tweets have ever done. I think my previous highest likes were just over 1000.

– And I profiled Charlotte Bax, the founder of Mars Needs Women. This social impact clothing brand not only wants to highlight women already working in STEM fields, but they also want to encourage girls who are interested in STEM programs. The sweatshirts look cool and when you make your purchase you donate money to a STEM program for young girls. And you get to choose the amount.

– For The Observer, I spoke to Dear White People costume designer Ceci about what to expect from season 2. Including the color story behind the costumes, vintage shopping and importance of representation.

There is more to come from SYFY FANGRRLS so keep an eye out. Meanwhile, I will still be posting Americans reviews here (only 3 episodes left *sob*) and other updates. The ladysuits will be back. For now enjoy Kristen Stewart, Ava DuVernay, Jury head Cate Blanchett, Léa Seydoux and Khadja Nin at the Cannes jury photocall from last week.

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Best of TV Costuming 2016: Work in Other Places

22 Dec

So 2016 has been bit of an emotional roller coaster on a large global scale and a personal one with moments of so much joy and immense sadness.

Writing wise this has been my best year yet as I finally got over my pitching fears (well, mostly) and have a weekly TV and Style column at The Observer where I have discussed numerous shows and costume moments beginning with Girls back in February. I have also contributed to Collider with several Americans essays and a TV themed gift guide (still time to buy!).

Here is a selection of my favorite pieces of work from 2016 including a personal essay, topics I have been obsessed with for a long time, discussing so many different shows from this year (with a dash of the ’90s) and I also got to interview two amazing costume designers.Outlander Season 2 2016Kicking off with the essay that was incredibly hard to write, but also gave me great comfort after my father passed away in July. I got married in September and in the lead up I knew it would be a very happy day tinged with sadness and writing about Outlander, my father and our shared heritage helped.

I don’t tend to be someone who is good with sharing my deepest feelings and personal essays are an uneasy prospect: however connecting to the work of Terry Dresbach and the Outlander team led to an outpouring of words.the americansI wrote about The Americans a lot in 2016 both here and other places. I spoke to costume designer Katie Irish at the start of the fourth season about Coach, the many coats and other costume design disguise secrets.

For Collider I went deep about Elizabeth Jennings and motherhood, why the teens on this show don’t fall into the usual annoying obstacle trap and looked at how the Cold War is making a comeback on TV (this was before other significant events).westworldOne of the most fulfilling experiences of 2016 was talking to Westworld costume designer Ane Crabtree after the season finale. Part of this is because I have been writing about Crabtree’s work since TV Ate My Wardrobe started with Masters of Sex and because of all the anecdotes and insight I got from this phone conversation.fleabagOne of the first pieces I wrote on TV Ate My Wardrobe was about lipstick on TV/film and I expanded upon this idea while discussing the Empire CoverGirl line and how powerful make-up can be.

Other key lipstick essays include two of my favorite shows of the year with how Fleabag paints over the cracks and the portrayal of women working in the tech industry in the ’80s on Halt and Catch Fire. And the time jump on Halt and Catch Fire allowed me to address my own nostalgia and one of my favorite style decades.img_4381In a similar vein, but at the end of the scale the build up to new Gilmore Girls was the perfect time to address all the fashion mishaps of the early ’00s.

BrainDead is one of my favorite shows of the year for being fun, weird, having so much flames chemistry and rethinking how to do a “previously on.” Plus it gave me so many outfit goals and I got to expand on this further heregame-of-thronesAnd now for my most viewed article, which also happens to be one of my favorite costume moments of the year when Sansa made sure Jon knew he was family by making him a very Ned fur.

Also on the subject of Game of Thrones I previewed the “Battle of the Bastards” with a ‘Who wore it better?’ competition and went all in on Cersei’s power move ensemble.

On the pieces I have wanted to write about forever track; Angela singing on Mr. Robot let me go all in on the sadness karaoke essay that has been itching to come out since Eliza sang “Chandelier” on Selfie.

The second season of Mr. Robot was messy in places, but the women delivered and it gave me plenty to write about from a costuming perspective. Oh and everyone looks hotter in sunglasses as the Fug Girls always say.felicity-and-marciaA tale of two haircuts and I am very proud of finding a very strong link between Keri Russell’s infamous Felicity haircut and Marcia Clark’s mid-trial makeover. American Crime Story’s “Marcia, Marcia, Marcia” is one of my favorite episodes of TV this year and exploring the legacies of a style change was incredibly fulfilling.

I binged the first season of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend the week after my dad died and it was a much needed distraction so I will forever be grateful for Rachel Bloom and Rebecca Bunch. Season 2 has also provided some very interesting talking points including portrayals of lady friendships and makeovers. Plus Rebecca’s imagination delivers on plenty of fun costume changes.

Here’s to more in 2017 and for my author pages at The Observer and Collider head here and here.

For individual costume highlights check out Best of the Rest Parts 1 and 2.

 

 

 

Work in Other Places: Talking Underwear on TV and the Best Shows of the Year (So Far)

9 Jul

Shameless self-promotion time and if you can’t shamelessly self-promote on your own website then I don’t know where you can.

Over at Flavorwire I had the pleasure of talking to costume designers from Masters of Sex (Ane Crabtree), The Americans (Jenny Gering) and You’re the Worst (Wendy Benbrook) about the importance of undergarments and how both period and contemporary costuming reflects on and can impact current trends.

Masters of Sex 2.03 Fight The Americans 2.06 You're the Worst 1.01Here is an extract and you read the whole thing here

The Americans is a bridge between period and contemporary fashion — the ’80s don’t feel so long ago — and it helps that The Americans‘ costuming isn’t what you might typically expect from this decade (lurid neons, shoulder pads). The show keeps a toe in the ’70s, and that’s reflected in Elizabeth’s everyday underwear choices.

While a visible bra strap might have been an extremely telling costuming choice even in The Americans‘ era, shows set in the present day are likely to use this detail far more casually. For sitcoms featuring young women —  Youre the Worst, Broad City, New Girl, Girls — warmer weather means, “What kind of bra can I wear with this?” dilemmas.”

And over at Complex I wrote about why The Americans is one of the “Best TV Shows of 2015 (So Far)” focusing on the complicated relationships at the heart of this Cold War era spy show: “Disguises, wigs and missions create tense and fraught moments, but the heart shattering action takes place in the most mundane of locations as these characters reveal who they actually are. In a world where secrets protect, the truth is a loaded weapon and The Americans is not afraid of pulling the trigger.”

 

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