A Madam Malkin for the Flapper Era – “Fantastic Beasts” Costume Designer Colleen Atwood!

Pottermore has treated us to another glimpse behind the scenes of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, this time by speaking to costume designer Colleen Atwood!

The brief interview focuses on Atwood’s work dressing Tina and Queenie Goldstein and finding the right look for each sister.

There will be no Hogwarts school robes in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, which definitely has an advantage for the fashion-loving Potter fan. There will be nothing but beautiful 1920s-era designs worn by both the magical and non-magical characters in the film! Here are Atwood’s thoughts on designing for Tina:

Tina had been an Auror. She’s fallen out of that world, but I still wanted her to have the feeling of that world. So I gave her an overcoat that’s a little bit loose like an Auror’s coat, but made of more ordinary fabric, as though she’d downgraded from that spectacular leather silhouette of the Aurors. Right from the start, I saw her in soft, cooler colours and warm greys, those sort of tonalities.

The article also mentions that a masculine edge to Tina’s costuming is deliberate, fitting very much in with her pragmatic personality. Here are a few screenshots of Tina’s look from the behind-the-scenes featurette released a few weeks ago. Can you see Atwood’s thoughts at work in her designs?

Noting Queenie’s lighter and more traditionally feminine style, Atwood says,

Queenie uses her magic in a different way; she’s got a different energy [than] Tina altogether, and I wanted to dress her in a different way, keeping her light and her colours light: air-like and rosy and warm and approachable.

Here are a few shots of the glimpses we’ve had of Queenie’s costuming so far!

At the close of the interview, Atwood mentions a fact that many fans may not know – that often actors have multiple sets of the same costume. Since Queenie and Tina are so active in the film, Atwood made duplicates of their ensembles rather than finding period clothing for actresses Alison Sudol and Katherine Waterston to wear.

I have six of Tina’s costume and six of Queenie’s. It would have been useless to find one real outfit for each of them from the era; they need so many of them.

We certainly can’t wait to see more of Atwood’s work in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them! What’s your favorite costume you’ve seen so far?

Jessica J.

I've been making magic at MuggleNet since 2012, when I first joined the staff as a News intern. I've never wavered from the declaration in my childhood journal, circa October 2000: "I LOVE Harry Potter! If I clean my room, my mom says she'll make me a dinner a wizard would love!" Proud Gryffindor; don't hate.