Décor of ice crystals and Yeti-tinis, an all-white party look, a gorgeous gothic black Alaia dress with frills by Wednesday Addams, and dancing to “Goo Goo Muck” by The Cramps…
“Woe What a Night” was the most stylish episode of streaming TV in a year full of these shows, as shows like “Wednesday,” “The White Lotus,” “Euphoria” and “Stranger Things” made costume designers the influencers of 2022. Their work led to skyrocketing online searches for Portia clothing, House of Sunny sweaters, Prada lace-ups, face crystals and more, setting trends at all levels of the market.
Four-time Oscar-winning costume legend Colleen Atwood, behind all of Tim Burton’s films, designed “Wednesday,” which made history as Netflix’s second-most-watched show in English, with an estimated 150 million households watching, according to the streamer. .
It’s already making its way into fashion, too, with the #wednesdayoutfits hashtag racking up 2.3 million views on TikTok as users post their own hacks of Jenny Ortega’s black prom dress and pick up Shein’s “Wednesday”-inspired black and white snaps, join in on Enid Sinclair cosplay and more .
Since its premiere, the show has generated $180.5 million in media impact value, according to Launchmetrics. The most mentioned brand next to the show was Prada, which gained attention because Wednesday wears Prada Monolith lace-up shoes as school shoes and earned $1.4 million worth of media impact. Being featured on the viral dance scene has earned Alaia $1.1 million worth of media exposure.
“Well, maybe they’ll give me a discount,” said Atwood, who bought the Alaia dress at the brand’s New Bond Street boutique in London, laughing when she heard the numbers.
A costume designer for four decades, Atwood created the Hannibal Lecter mask, the “Ed Wood” angora sweater, the “Edward Scissorhands” gothic black leather suit, Roxie Hart’s “Chicago” dance dress, and many other iconic movie looks. But this is the first time she’s been pitched for a streaming show.
“It’s a different kind of audience participation, and a lot has happened since those other projects. Social media was not as epic as it is today. This makes accessibility much greater and the ability to communicate and get excited about the view. It’s also international, so it’s very exciting.”
In 2010, Atwood designed a capsule collection with HSN tied to “Snow White and The Huntsman,” and next year she’ll have one with Target tied to the upcoming live-action version of “The Little Mermaid,” directed by Rob Marshall.
But so far, she hasn’t been approached about doing anything around “Wednesday,” which has yet to be renewed for a second season.
“The capsule collection around ‘Wednesday’ could be a gold mine,” Atwood said. “Look at all the different characters, you’ve got Weems for grown women and Wednesday and Enid and all the other girls,” she said, adding that she would be game to propose and continue the show for another season. . “I’ve had some really nice letters from people and one of them said thank you so much for doing ‘Wednesday’ because my 13-year-old daughter is now really sorry she cut her school uniform to the crotch,” Atwood said. her more modest take on teenage style.
The second season of “The White Lotus” scored Dolce & Gabbana, loved by Tanya McQuoid’s character, and in a genius cross-promotion worn by actress Jennifer Coolidge on the show’s premiere, for a combined $800,000 worth of media impact, according to Launchmetrics. Appearing in several scenes of the show, Tanya’s pink Valentino bag earned the brand $335,000 worth of media exposure.
But it’s not just big brands that benefit from streaming series. The second season of “The White Lotus” also put the spotlight on knitwear from London-based indie label House of Sunny as part of Portia’s chaotic Gen-Z wardrobe, which is hotly debated on social media — and among fashion editors.
“No outfit this year has sparked so much contentious discussion among the Vogue fashion news team,” wrote Sarah Spellings in a post titled “Are Portia’s Outfits on ‘The White Lotus’ Good or Bad?”
The main reason is the setbacks, costume designer Alex Bovaird told The New York Times, explaining that Portia (played by Haley Lu Richardson) looked to social media influencers for inspiration.
Part of the resonance of many streaming shows is that they hold up a mirror to the social media landscape of fashion creativity.
“People send me street style shots or … when they see scantily clad teenagers, they tell me it’s my fault,” said “Euphoria” costume designer Heidi Bivens. “But honestly, these things have already happened. I just tapped into it. And then I had a platform to put it on television, where often a lot of the time, especially on the networks, there was a more commercial look.”
Fishnet tops, strappy dresses and lace-up sandals are just a few of the fashion trends spawned by the hit HBO series, which spawned its own #EuphoriaHigh TikTok challenge when its second season premiered last January.
“It’s a great opportunity for studios and producers to start seeing costume designers as bigger creative partners and not just people who put cool clothes on people,” Bivens said.
Costume design also helped elevate the streaming talent.
Part of the true fashion success of “Euphoria” stars Hunter Schafer, Angus Cloud and Sydney Sweeney, landing campaigns for Prada, Polo by Ralph Lauren fragrance, Miu Miu and more, is due to Bivens’ ability to build character with her own designs, vintage and current pieces from brands like House of CB, Akna, Prada and Coperni.
Bivens’ look carried over to the runways as well, with Paris-based label Coperni taking direct inspiration from the show for its high school-themed Fall 2022 collection, down to student lockers as part of the production.
“They represent the new guard – and to think that an American show could have such a bigger impact on the world is exciting. The language of fashion can travel,” said Bivens, a former WWD staffer.
The third season of “Emily in Paris,” which premieres Wednesday, is also set to be a fashion hit, building on the influence of the first two seasons with even bolder colors and patterns, berets, exposed abs and big shoulders.
Looks by Valentino, Balmain, Louis Vuitton, Christian Lacroix, Kevin Germanier, Skorpios, Essential Antwerp and more are among the 40,000 pieces of clothing and accessories by costume designer Marylin Fitoussi acquired for the HBO Max show.
“[Brands] should be treated [costume designers] as influencers. What they didn’t understand is that while they’re not necessarily building everything from scratch, they’re creating and bringing designs to the small and big screen, which makes them exceptional stylists,” said Stacy Jones, founder of pop culture brand partnerships agency Hollywood Branded. .
Launchmetrics CEO Michael Jais goes a step further: “The future is in brands creating their own TV shows.”