Real-Life 1940s Heiress Florence Foster Jenkins Created Her Own Wardrobe

Seeing that “Florence Foster Jenkins” is a true story about a real woman, historical accuracy and attention to detail were of the utmost importance when Oscar-nominated costume designer Consolata Boyle was dressing Meryl Streep for the film. This is the second time Boyle has collaborated on a project with Streep, as they worked together on “The Iron Lady” in 2011.

Also known for her work on Stephen Frears-directed films such as “The Queen” and “Philomena,” the Irish designer had quite a task on her hands for this one. Jenkins, a New York heiress, was not only famous for her horrendous singing voice, but her unique and outlandish attire as well. A fixture in 1940s high society, Jenkins created all of her own flamboyant costumes herself.

florence foster jenkins
Meryl Streep and Hugh Grant in “Florence Foster Jenkins.”
CREDIT: Paramount

Boyle tells The Telegraph, “She dressed the same as she had as a girl, before the various tragedies and darknesses affected her life. Her costumes were like her childhood dressing-up outfits, so everything was in very childish colors.”

Pumps, furs, flowers, ruffles, elaborate hats, a plethora of costume jewelry and angel wings were all apart of Jenkins’ persona. If we can say one thing for sure, it’s that Florence Foster Jenkins’ wardrobe demanded to be looked at.

florence foster jenkins costumes oscar
Academy Award-nominated costumes for “Florence Foster Jenkins” by designer Consolata Boyle.<br />From FIDM Museum’s 25th annual Art of Motion Picture Costume Design exhibition in Los Angeles, open to the public through April 22.
CREDIT: Courtesy of FIDM/Alex J. Berliner/ABImages
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