Welcome to FrockTalk, the web’s only costume-based movie review site. The goal of Frocktalk is to shed light on the magnificent artistry of costume design in motion pictures. Reviews on this site are written by working costume designers in the entertainment industry – people who know, better than anyone, what it takes to make it all happen. The focus of FrockTalk is not to comment on the big flashy costume dramas, but to call attention to the seemingly ordinary costume design work in film that silently and persuasively moves the audience toward understanding the characters. Costume design for motion pictures is an art form that deserves more recognition than it usually gets. Fancy, pretty costumes do not always equal effective, appropriate costumes. The art of the costume is in letting the audience know who the character is, before the actor even has a chance to open his mouth. Read on, and enjoy. ** CAUTION: ALL REVIEWS CONTAIN SPOILERS! **

Dear Kristin: Where Can I see Sketches?

Sketch:  Leon Bakst, 1911 - one of the best costume designers/illustrators of ALL TIME.

Sketch: Leon Bakst, 1911 - one of the best costume designers/illustrators of ALL TIME.

Hello Frocktalkers – I am up to my armpits in prep on a new film, so forgive me if these updates are brief and far between.  I am doing my best for you, and looking forward to more interviews during, and about, awards season!!  Here is the latest in the “Ask Kristin” feature –

Dear Kristin:  Do you know of any on-line site where one can view sketches of costumes for particular movies?  I am particularly interested in the simple striped smock/apron worn by Madame Méliès in Hugo. Thanks. – Frocktalker Amy

Dear Frockalker Amy:  Thank you so much for this question.  There are a few ways to see costume sketches from specific films.  The first is to google “costume sketch (movie title)” or “costume illustration (movie title)”, or “costume sketch (designer name)”.  The problem is.. we, as designers, are not technically allowed to share these sketches as they are property of the studio.  The studio has to approve publication of these sketches in order for them to be made public.  So while you might be able to find some of the sketches from the movie, you might not be able to find ALL of them.  Additionally, if the garment was rented or purchased, there may not BE a sketch for it, as it wasn’t something that was constructed.  Generally, we sketch costumes that need to be built/sewn – we sketch in order to show the workroom (and the director, and the studio) our ideas.  Occasionally, when we have time/money, we can sketch all of the looks for a movie, but generally we sketch what needs to be constructed, as a matter of practical reality.

I hope that this answers your question.  Unfortunately, there is not one “hub” for costume sketches.  But hey – if anyone wants to start one, I will totally support you.  Just saying… www.costumesketchhub.com is up for grabs!


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