When you turn on a TV show or movie, you want to be momentarily transported into that world. There is a lot that goes into making that illusion feel believable for audiences, especially when the piece takes place in a different time period. This was the case with Daisy Jones & the Six, a limited series that recently premiered on Amazon Prime. Based on Taylor Jenkins Reid’s 2019 best-selling novel of the same name, it tells the story of a California-based band from the 1970s, which was loosely based on Stevie Nicks and Fleetwood Mac. Throughout the miniseries, viewers get a peak into the lives of a fictional band that rises and eventually breaks up during the peak of their success due to personal relationships among the members. In this TV adaptation, Costume Designer, Denise Wingate had a tough task, making the 2020s feel like the 1970s.
The series stars Riley Keough as the titular Daisy Jones and Sam Claflin as her co-lead Billy Dunne, with Suki Waterhouse and Camila Morrone in supporting roles. Each of the complex characters is heavily developed through the use of clothing, and the stars proved to have a bit of an influence when it came to costumes. Wingate shared, “Riley [Keough] was listening to Fleetwood Mac’s ‘Gold Dust Woman’ and said that’s who she wanted to emulate.”
During the band's final performance after a highly successful but tumultuous career, lead singer Daisy Jones wore one of the most iconic looks of the series. This outfit featured a long crocheted dress with what appears to be a gold lamé cape over it. To create this look, Wingate took a gold Halston dress and cut it down the middle to mimic a cape, drawing parallels to the capes and shawls worn by Stevie Nicks in the 70s.
The emulation of "Gold Dust Woman" was deeply ingrained in this outfit specifically because of not only its whimsical nature and the color palettes, but also because of the inspiration that was taken from the singer herself. Being that the final performance was so heavily anticipated, there was a lot to live up to with this outfit. Not only was it effective in showing the captivating nature of Daisy and the band, but it was also so effective at encapsulating the fashion of this era. The incorporation of crochet paid homage to the trends of the 1970s, and it came together perfectly with the cape. Wingate said, of this outfit, “It’s sort of like going out in a ball of fire.”
Billy Dunne, a charismatic frontman of the fictional band and a lead character in the series, was best represented through his easygoing style. These outfits were heavily influenced by frontmen of this decade. Wingate stated, “My whole inspiration for [Billy] was early Bruce Springsteen… His look is denim-on-denim with rockin’ leather jackets and boots.” The denim-on-denim look and leather jackets are aspects that are seen repeatedly on Billy’s character, and it perfectly represents both the 70s rockstar look and the specific inspiration. By dressing this character like the most iconic singers of this decade, Wingate was able to depict him as the cool guy, while also showing the star power that he possesses. While the women's fashion in this show is more bold, Billy is best characterized through simple styles that create a subtle nod to icons like Springsteen.
Coat choices in particular were an element that contributed so much to the aesthetics of the show. By channeling the fur trims and flashy patterns that were seen in this era, the costume design was able to make the characters more believable and instantly transport viewers back to 1978. Wingate has even said that if people are to invest in any piece from this era, it should be a good coat.
When it comes to characters on screen, clothing choices are so important. Not only must they be believable for the time period being depicted, but their clothing needs to tell viewers something about those characters. Are they bold and daring or do they play it safe? This question can easily be answered through the costume design. Because of the success of Taylor Jenkins Reid's novel, all eyes were on this series. Luckily, in this case, the costume design was done magnificently. Denise Wingate not only channeled all of the right style icons, but she also added her own flair to make the costumes stand out. Because of this, we get to see Daisy Jones and the Six come to life on screen exactly how they were meant to be.