Game of Thrones is one of the most popular shows on television at the moment – and one of the most fantastical, too. From direwolves to dragons, errant knights to prophetic priestesses, white walkers to giants, and Jon Snow literally coming back from the dead, the HBO drama blows our minds each and every single week.
But, hidden away amongst all of that magic and mysticism, lies something very ordinary. So ordinary, in fact, that you may even have one sitting in your own home right now.
We’re referring, of course, to the Game of Thrones art department’s fondness for a certain piece of IKEA furniture.
A Lannister will always pay their debts, but a costume designer would prefer not to get into the red in the first place.
And that is why they always prefer to use craftiness and prudence to create something truly spectacular, rather than blow their budget on expensive materials, CGI effects, and the like.
Take, for instance, the iconic fur capes worn by the Starks, the Night’s Watch, and the like.
They look suitably shaggy, furry, and weather-worn, don’t they? Just as you’d expect the pelt of a wolf to look.
Except (thankfully) these costumes aren’t made from real fur. Instead, they’re carefully crafted out of… well, out of IKEA rugs.
Michele Clapton, a costume designer on the first five seasons of Game of Thrones, was giving a talk at the Getty Museum in Los Angeles, entitled Designing the Middle Ages: The Costumes of GoT.
Passionate about her craft (and her thriftiness), she called upon an audience of future costume designers and cosplay fans alike to get creative with their materials and search high and low for inspiration, even in the most unlikely of places.
Because, as she goes on to prove, all that might stand between them and a kickass costume is a trip to IKEA.
In the talk, Clapton said: “These capes are actually IKEA rugs. It's a bit of a truth. We take anything we can.
“We cut, shave them, add strong leather straps and then breakdown, which is like a religion on Game of Thrones.
“I want the audience to almost smell the costumes.”
We reckon, with a bit of work, we could transform the £30 Ludde rug into the furry medieval cape of our dreams.
Anyone suddenly in the mood for a trip to IKEA…?