“Outlander” has arrived in New York City, and fans of the hit historical-drama-meets-sci-fi fantasy braved a rainy New York on Thursday to get a glimpse of the show’s stars.
Saks Fifth Avenue’s flagship in midtown Manhattan unveiled five new windows dedicated to the costumes of the series, which takes its stars to the 18th century French court this season. The costumes also get a starring role in the Saks “Maglog” this spring.
While show stars Caitriona Balfe and Sam Heughan got a whole lot of love from fans, there was one behind-the-scenes star that people couldn’t stop talking about: costume designer Terry Dresbach.
“The great thing about Terry is that she designs for your character,” said Balfe, who plays Claire Randall. “A lot of what she does really informs your character, and for me, it was initially to play with the other side of my femininity. We haven’t seen Claire in this way before, and I think she enjoyed the dress up initially, but the clothes are precious and Claire is a woman who likes to be active and practical.”
FN caught up with the costume designer ahead of the second season premiere on Saturday.
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How did you choose the costumes for the Saks windows?
“It was really tough because all of the costumes were meant to be as over-the-top and as spectacular as possible. The red gown was an absolute must, as was the Dior-inspired piece. In one window, all the fabrics are hand-painted, and I wanted to really showcase the fabulous work my team did.”
Obviously this took a lot of manpower. How long did it the process take?
“It took us a year to make everything. In one window, the gown and the suit took two months each to make, and we made 10,000 garments. I want fans to know that we made [these costumes]. We made every stitch.”
What about the shoes for Season 2?
“We have killer shoes! I sort of had to make a shoe line for this. I took 18th century shoes — which have some of the sexiest silhouettes of shoes ever — and tweaked them a little bit so that anybody who might want to wear them would be able to. I mean, we really could do a line of the shoes from this.”
What gets you motivated and inspired to create?
“I don’t know if it’s inspiration or fear that drives us a lot of the time (laughing). We had to make a lot of costumes in a really short amount of time. We really got to make costumes for a really spectacular period, and this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. No one says go for it and do whatever you want.”