From the fantastic costumes to the gorgeous plaits, “Game of Thrones” has had a big impact on fashion and style thanks to a very talented group of people who created unique looks and complex hairstyles for tens of characters.
If you’re interested in the style of “Game of Thrones”, discover a few secrets about the fashion and hair from Westeros and Essos with unique insights from Emmy winner Michele Clapton, the HBO show’s costume designer, and Emmy-nominated hair designer Kevin Alexander.
Westeros and Essos Style Inspiration
While the fantasy show has strong a medieval vibe, costume designer Michele Clapton chose to find inspiration in many cultures and eras to find the perfect “Game of Thrones” style.
The costumes have been inspired by everything from Inuit tribes and Japanese armor to modern designs. While most costumes seem to share common elements with outfits worn in Europe in the Middle Ages, Clapton also introduced elements from Northern Africa and the Middle East into the mix to keep up with the show’s expanding universe.
The Dirty Look
The fashion of Westeros and Essos needs to look dirty and worn in a lot of times and that process can take as long as actually putting them together. “If it takes three days to make a costume, it then takes another three days to destroy it and break it,” Michele Clapton explained to Fashionista.com.
While the “Game of Thrones“ clothes go though an elaborate process that includes oiling, sanding and waxing, the key to the dirty hair is lots of vaseline, before processing with dry products including dirt powder.
Daenerys’ Style Evolution
From season 1 to season 3, Daenerys, played by Emilia Clarke, went through a very important style evolution. Adding touches of dragon scales to her looks was one of the important details that makes the fashion and hair from Westeros and Essos seem real, but more masculine elements and the color blue are also details that reflect the character’s journey.
“I like to put blues on her because they’re a reference back to Khal Drogo and the Dothraki, because blue was their special color”, the Emmy-winning costume designer explained.
Margaery’s and Cersei’s Alexander McQueen Inspiration
One of the modern details in “Game of Thrones” style is the funnel neckline created by Alexander McQueen and worn by Icelandic singer Björk on the cover of her “Homogenic” album. First seen in season 2 in Margaery’s wardrobe, the style also returned the following year on Cersei, another thematic clue to the two character’s rivarly.
“Game of Thrones” Hair
While the show started with around 20-30 wigs, Emmy-nominated hair designer Kevin Alexander had to take it up to 50-100 in the following seasons. The most expensive wigs, like the ones worn by Daenerys, Cersei, Margaery and Melisandre, have to be washed and styled daily, since they cost around $7000, according to Alexander.
The hair coloring, such as Sansa’s red or Joffrey’s blonde, has to be touched up daily for filming and the diverse shooting locations, from Iceland to Morocco also have different environmental factors that can affect how the wigs look like during shooting.
The ice-blonde wigs seen on Daenerys take up the most time for maintenance, since they’re very sensitive to smoke and sand. Her gorgeous plates are sticking to the Dothraki look, but they’ve had a big impact on popular culture already.
“Those plaits have become very much her. It’s amazing how much it’s influenced the fashion world,” Kevin Alexander explained.
When it comes to “Game of Thrones” style, the costume and hair departments don’t always work together, but Margaery’s hair is influenced by her style. The hair designer took cues from her costumes to complete her style: “We pulled so much more hair away, so it makes her more distinctive and different from everyone else (...) I wanted a lot more to be showing, I wanted a lot more flesh on her. We wanted there to be a little more sexiness.”
Jon Snow’s Hair
Besides expensive wigs, the “Game of Thrones” hair department also works a lot to create looks that fit the characters. Actor Kit Harington has mentioned that he’d stick to short hair if he could, but the ringlets that have become his signature hairstyle on the show are definitely a fan favorite. In order to get the effect, Kevin Alexander uses wax and hair putty or damp hair go get a natural effect.