Fashion

Fleabag jumpsuit: Phoebe Waller-Bridge kept the costume after the TV show ended

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Hannah-Rose Yee
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Phoebe Waller-Bridge as Fleabag in the iconic black jumpsuit

You better believe that when it came to keeping a memento from the television show, the creator made sure she got her hands on that iconic jumpsuit.  

It was the jumpsuit that launched a thousand online shopping hauls.

We’re talking about the jumpsuit worn by Phoebe Waller-Bridge in episode one of the second season of her smash-hit series Fleabag. A jumpsuit with a fantastically daring cleavage cut out, a high neckline and wide through the trousers. The perfect thing to wear to a calamitous family dinner and a first meeting with a cool, whiskey-drinking, very sexy priest.

Back when the episode first aired, we tracked down the original jumpsuit, designed by British brand LOVE and on sale for just £38 ($48, a steal!), so that any woman between UK sizes 8-14, which sadly was the jumpsuit’s complete size range, could purchase it for themselves. A LOVE spokesperson even admitted to Stylist that the original Fleabag jumpsuit was purchased by the costume designer from their concession inside the Topshop Oxford Circus store. 

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Well, now we know that when filming wrapped on the final season of Fleabag, Waller-Bridge asked for the jumpsuit as a memento. And she can’t wait to wear it again. 

Waller-Bridge admitted that she had kept the jumpsuit to Taffy Brodesser-Akner, who interviewed her onstage in New York to celebrate the release of Fleabag: The Scriptures. (“Yes, she owns it, yes she’ll wear it again one day,” Vanity Fair wrote, recapping the event.)

Waller-Bridge also spoke about the feeling of saying goodbye to a character that had been so important to her for such a long time.

“I started getting sort of panicky because I could feel the character leaving me,” she said. “And I remember feeling like, No, no, we have one more show! I felt her go… It was such a lovely feeling…I don’t actually know where she is now and I think that’s the right thing for both of us.”

Waller-Bridge also admitted that she has no idea where Fleabag is right now, though she has some hopes. “I really, honestly don’t know where she is,” she said. Here, the crowd reacted with disappointment “She lives by the sea,” Waller-Bridge joked. “Priest rides in on a donkey, [and she’s like] Oh, you came back for me!” 

Andrew Scott’s beautiful tribute to Phoebe Waller-Bridge
Andrew Scott and Phoebe Waller-Bridge in Fleabag.

Fleabag mania was such that, when the show aired in early 2019, searches for the character’s jumpsuit, red dress and, er, religious porn, all surged exponentially. The demand for the Fleabag jumpsuit was particularly high: LOVE reportedly sold out of their initial run in a day, and has since re-released the style.

“I remember the moment I saw the jumpsuit,” costume designer Ray Holman told A Cup Of Jo. “We were in a fitting and I said, ‘Look, I’m going to show you this, just put it on.’ She put the jumpsuit on and went, ‘Oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, this is episode one’. It looked amazing on her. It was making a statement, because at that point in our story, she hadn’t seen her family for a year. So, she did make an effort. The jumpsuit, with her flat Supergas, not with her high heels.”  

Phoebe Waller-Bridge after Emma Dibdin and Laura Prudom presented her with a TCA award while wearing the viral Fleabag jumpsuit.
Phoebe Waller-Bridge after Emma Dibdin and Laura Prudom presented her with a TCA award while wearing the viral Fleabag jumpsuit.

The jumpsuit went on to become a thing of legend. Women bought it to wear to dinners, weddings, fancy galas and to pick their kids up from school. Two writers even donned matching Fleabag jumpsuits to present Waller-Bridge with her TCA award earlier this year, much to the creator’s delight.

Now we know she owns the jumpsuit herself the only question is – when will she wear it again? 

Images: BBC, Getty

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Hannah-Rose Yee

Hannah-Rose Yee is a writer based in London. You can find her on the internet talking about movies, television and Chris Pine.

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