Outlander Costume Designer Terry Dresbach on Season 2 in 18th-Century Paris

We love Terry and have much appreciation for the hard work she and her crew put into making all those thousands of costume for Season 2. We can’t wait to see them play out the story this season.

Here is a really good interview with Terry discussing with Harper’s Bazaar how they went about designing totally different costumes for a totally different world from what we saw in Outlander Season 1. We also love her sense of humor.

BAZAAR: Time travel is essential to Outlander‘s story. In Season 1, you’re in Scotland, navigating between the 1940s and the 1740s. In Season 2, you’re back in the 1940s but also in 18th century Paris. As the costume designer, what are the challenges that stem from this?

Terry Dresbach: It was a different universe, a different planet, a different world; there’s nothing from Scotland that transfers to Paris. The two periods are not relevant. Nothing we had could travel with us. That meant we had to start over as if it was an entirely new show, and the first season wasn’t a small task. The second season is 10 times as big, a hundred times as big! I spent a lot of time jumping up and down during Season 1—like the robot from [Lost in SpaceSwiss Family Robinson—going “warning, warning! People, there’s a tsunami coming!” And they were like, “we just want to get through Season 1 before we start talking about Season 2.” And finally they listened to me, so we started making the clothes for Season 2 halfway through Season 1.

HB: You started really far in advance!

TD: We had to or we would’ve died. We had to make thousands of costumes.

HB: I read that your department made 10,000 pieces for this season. That is unfathomable.

TD: It is, and I don’t know how we did it. It’s a bit of a blur. We had to put everything into segments, so we would get to one and go, “oh my God, we have to make five million pairs of shoes? OK, everybody, go make shoes. Oh! Wait a minute, fans. Where are we gonna get fans? Wait! Hats!” So we set up a millinery team, and then a fan team. The biggest thing we had to figure out was where the hell we were going to get 18th-century fabric from. There is no store that sells that, so we had to make it. I have a very, very green team. On a heavy day of shooting we did have up to 60 people, but our core group is about 30 and only four of them have ever worked in film and television before.

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