Photo: Ben Blackall / © 2022 Focus Features LLC

Image Source: Ben Blackall / © 2022 Focus Features LLC

Back once more on the large display screen since its first cinematic installment in 2019, earlier than the world turned the other way up, the Crawleys of “Downton Abbey” and their in-house workers are but once more delivering class, intrigue, and vogue of their second movie, “Downton Abbey: A New Era.” The new film picks up the place the final ends, set at the finish of the Roaring Twenties in 1928 earlier than the world slides into a world financial melancholy.

Very a lot wanted in a world presently grappling with despair and grief, the movie feels decidedly extra joyous and humorous than the final film and way more than the collection that introduced the English property’s inhabitants into our properties and hearts. There is sort of a little bit of journey to go round too, from a wedding to a trip in the South of France to the entrance of Hollywood movie stars making a film inside the film.

An epic enterprise akin to this throughout a world pandemic required the experience of a dressing up designer who already knew the Crawleys and company fairly nicely. So, costume designer Anna Robbins was again at the head of wardrobe after costuming the collection’s final two seasons and the first movie.

“The forged and crew are like a household, and it was a beautiful expertise working with them once more,” Robbins tells POPSUGAR of engaged on the second film. “We have been all excited and grateful to have that chance anyway, however for it to be throughout a pandemic made it particular another way as a result of we have been in a position to see each other and work. The pandemic undoubtedly made it tougher as a result of we needed to function in a really totally different approach. There have been a whole lot of impacts on the costume division, however we have been in a position to overcome all these challenges.”

Photo: Ben Blackall / © 2022 Focus Features LLC

Image Source: Ben Blackall / © 2022 Focus Features LLC

None of these challenges reads on display screen from the begin, when the viewers will get to affix in the pleasure of Lucy and Tom’s marriage ceremony to kick off the film. “It was superb and a privilege to get the probability to design a bridal look inside Downton,” Robbins says. “It undoubtedly comes with a sure stress since you wish to make it good and do the character justice with this very particular robe. Knowing it was the opening scene for the movie, we knew we wished to have an impactful search for Lucy’s gown, but in addition for the congregation we have been seeing in the church that have been each upstairs and downstairs. Everyone was of their finery, so we have been in a position to have a look at shade and actually compose the scene so that each one of the colours have been harmonious.” There have been so many individuals on display screen at the ceremony, so Robbins actually had her work minimize out for her.

For Lucy’s gorgeous robe, Robbins was impressed by {a photograph} of a 1928 Chanel gown and one other vogue illustration from the time. “What I used to be actually drawn to was an uneven hem and frothy layers of tulle,” Robbins says of the piece. “I wished to offer the sense that it was actually recent, up to date, and leading edge for the time. I wished it to really feel like Lucy might actually collect up her skirt and have a superb dance at the reception, so there was a form of ease and relaxed vibe to it. From there, it was about creating drama with a low again, a ravishing boat neck with chiffon, and silver embroidery laid over the satin, so you’ve got acquired a number of pretty performs on texture.”

Lucy additionally wears some unbelievable jewellery that’s genuine to the time interval, together with a diamond and pearl tiara and a ravishing Van Cleef & Arpels diamond brooch that she wears on her bodice. “It was an ideal costume to design and a stunning approach of introducing Lucy on this new world that she’s publicly a part of,” Robbins says. “We have been actually in a position to categorical her persona by means of her clothes in a approach that we hadn’t been in a position to do as a lot in her wardrobe as a woman’s maid in the first movie.”

Though the film solely strikes ahead one yr from the first movie, there are notable adjustments as everyone knows fashion can change drastically in a yr’s time. And there have been definitive shifts between the fashions of the ’20s and the ’30s that have been already shining by means of in the appears of rich ladies like Lady Mary. “She has at all times been very leading edge and forward of the time in relation to her fashion,” Robbins says of Michelle Dockery’s character, who works with film director Jack Barber to show his silent movie staged on the property right into a speaking movie. “We have been taking a look at some Nineteen Thirties silhouettes along with her, and that was actually thrilling.”

Robbins additionally styled Lady Edith in trousers for the first time as she turns her South of France vacation into a piece journey the place she covers the new palatial house that’s bequeathed to one among Downton’s youngest. She performed on the rise of pajama units in actual life at the time, which have been popularized by vogue designers like Paul Poiret and Callot Soeurs

in the area.

“Within Downton, that timeframe, and in the higher courses, there was an enormous quantity of etiquette when it got here to what you must put on and when,” Robbins says. “Traveling isn’t any exception to that, so you’d journey in a touring go well with and also you’d have your hat and your gloves in your bag. We began off in Yorkshire, so we had touring fits completed in an English approach. The weight of the suiting on the gents was tweed, and the hats have been felt.”

Then, when the Crawleys and crew arrive at the villa, you see them transition to their South of France wardrobe — a very thrilling and shocking flip as we have but to see the household this relaxed and sun-kissed. This reveals by means of with lighter materials and a softer shade palette, with the ladies in pinks and yellows and the males in cream-colored linen. “We launched Robert in separates, which is a very pretty look that I had been ready to do,” Robbins says of the Downton patriarch. “He was in a Grenadier Guards blazer with separate trousers, together with a grey trouser to go away after which pale, fawn-colored trousers when he arrived at the villa. Little issues like that present they might’ve had an outfit for each event and scenario. He nonetheless arrives as this quintessentially English gentleman assembly this quintessentially French gentleman.”

Photo: Ben Blackall / © 2022 Focus Features LLC

Image Source: Ben Blackall / © 2022 Focus Features LLC

And in case you have been questioning, there have been actual similarities in dressing between the aristocratic courses in numerous nations at the time, particularly between London and Paris. “The guidelines in the South of France are way more relaxed, as it is a place the place persons are beginning to trip in the peak of summer time at the time and the pajama set brigade are ladies who’re sporting trousers,” Robbins says. “Menswear is getting extra relaxed with the double-breasted go well with jacket coming in to dispense the waistcoat, which might’ve made them lots cooler. The Crawleys displaying up with a small portion of their workers is a way more stripped-back and relaxed atmosphere at the villa, which is a pleasant distinction to Downton.”

But the Crawleys and their beloved workers aren’t the solely characters making waves this time round, as two Hollywood film stars are thrown into the combine: Myrna Dalgleish and Guy Dexter. “It was an ideal alternative to design for these actually attention-grabbing new characters who got here from fully totally different backgrounds and have an thrilling potential to push the boundaries of the storylines and with how they gown,” Robbins says of the duo who flip Downton Abbey right into a Hollywood film set. “I had a very nice codesigner on this movie named Maja Meschede, and we labored fairly intently on Myrna’s appears. Maja got here up with this lovely costume for her arrival which sums up who the character is and what we wished to do along with her. She’s wearing very icy colours, although she warms up a little bit bit all through the movie.” Myrna is full-on Tinseltown glamour, with cuffs, exaggerated necklines, and a definitive “extra is extra” vitality. Meschede and Robbins checked out the Hollywood stars of the time, together with Clara Bow, Louise Brooks, and Marlene Dietrich, to create her jaw-dropping ensembles.

Photo: Ben Blackall / © 2022 Focus Features LLC

Image Source: Ben Blackall / © 2022 Focus Features LLC

The film additionally takes a somber flip, with Downton matriarch Violet Crawley, Dowager Countess of Grantham, passing away. The second performs out over a pair scenes, with the household congregating in her bed room for her last breaths and goodbyes after which her funeral, which is a shifting and regal affair. “I needed to design the appears understanding they might work collectively in a whole lot of totally different configurations and throughout a whole lot of totally different scenes, ending up on this very intimate area,” Robbins says about the first scene with the household. “The palette needed to really feel harmonious with nothing leaping out inside it.”

For the funeral, nearly everyone seems to be in black, however a few of the workers are in muted colours of grey and brown as they could not have had a black outfit for the event. “It was about understanding what these characters would’ve had, so a few of them would’ve worn their Sunday finest,” she says. “Some of the characters have been sporting the identical look to the marriage ceremony at the starting as they have been to the funeral at the finish. We wished to signify their characters by means of costume, however we wished totally different textures, materials, detailing, and equipment, so we might add curiosity.”

Overall, this second “Downton Abbey” film feels extra open-hearted and joyous than any earlier chapter of the saga. “We want the enjoyable, laughter, and uplifting moments now greater than ever,” Robbins says. And this film delivers all of the aforementioned in spades.

Image Source: Ben Blackall / © 2022 Focus Features LLC

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