Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation
Top

The Help costume sketches

helpfashion.jpg
thehelpfashion.jpg

We adored the film adaptation of The Help, and whilst the acting and storyline are superb, we were also blown away by the beautiful costumes.

The prim and pretty dresses in a sugary pastel palette and bold floral prints are perfect for the Mad-Men era Southern Belles of the film (and very autumn/winter 2011). So when these sketches from Costume designer Sharen Davis landed on our desk, we had to share them with you.

As the book has its own memorable fashion moments (remember when Skeeter goes shopping for a new, grown-upwardrobe, and stocks up on daring Pucci dresses?), Davis (who also kitted out the retro wardrobes for Dreamgirls and Ray) pored over old Sears and JC Penney catalogue for inspiration, made 50 costumes from scratch using vintage fabrics, and even gave each character their own colour palette to make sure they looked authentically Jackson, Mississippi. The hard work paid off, as these sketches show.

ABOVE AND BELOW: Davis describes tall, gangly tomboy and writer Skeeter as having "the silhouette of a northerner but still looks like a schoolgirl". She is dressed in boxy skirt suits and simple tea dresses for most of the film, but is given a more glamorous, grown up look as the film progresses, as seen in the sketch for her Gala ball outfit, above.

ABOVE AND BELOW: Celia Foote is the 'white trash' wife who looks up to Marilyn Monroe, shunned by the other Jackson women, so Davis gave her a look that was "very Hollywood...but tacky and country". Her outfit for her ill-fated trip to the Gala ball leaves little to the imagination.

ABOVE AND BELOW: As the sharp, witty editor at New York publishers Harper & Rowe, Elain Stein has a more subdued palette than her Southern counterparts, wearing a fashion-forward but simple green tweed suit.

The Help is out in cinemas now. Watch the trailer here.

Related

emmastone1.jpg

Interview: Emma Stone

help2.jpg

The Help to hit the big screen

Comments

More

Red carpet fashion from the 2017 Oscars

Golden gowns and stand-out style at the 89th Academy Awards

by Amy Swales
26 Feb 2017

Front row stars at Milan Fashion Week

Here comes the glamour

26 Feb 2017

Milan Fashion Week street style

Bright, bold and glamorous

26 Feb 2017

Milan Fashion Week blog

Highlights from the shows

25 Feb 2017

Striking and stylish accessories under £30

Vibrant and unusual finishing touches

by Amy Swales
24 Feb 2017

Cath Kidston is releasing a 101 Dalmatians collection

Disney fans, rejoice…

by Kayleigh Dray
24 Feb 2017

Daily outfit inspiration with our look at the best dressed A-listers

Casual dressing ideas from stylish celebrities

23 Feb 2017

Hijabi model Halima Aden kicks off Milan Fashion Week

“Celebrating strong females”

by Anna Pollitt
23 Feb 2017

London Fashion Week blog

Highlights from the shows

21 Feb 2017

London Fashion Week street style

Spotted outside the shows

21 Feb 2017