Designer Colleen Atwood Spills the Tea on “Secrets of Dumbledore” Costumes

Award-winning costume designer Colleen Atwood has returned to the Wizarding World to weave her magic on the Fantastic Beasts franchise. Through an exclusive with A.Frame, Atwood has provided creative insights into the costume choices for four of the major characters in Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore.

The fashion and costumes of Secrets of Dumbledore follow the historical basis of the film’s setting, which is 1930s Europe. This was a time when women’s fashion was willowy with fluid silhouettes of satin and chiffon, while men’s fashion was the classic suits made of wool and tweed. Atwood used this foundation and then took some creative license, illustrating how wizarding fashion would have varied slightly from its Muggle counterpart.

For the character of Albus Dumbledore, Atwood chose the softer grays of his suits to reflect the color tones worn by both actors who played Dumbledore in the Harry Potter films (Richard Harris and Sir Michael Gambon). She also wanted Dumbledore to appear approachable, and this manifested itself visually with sumptuous pieces of cashmere.



Atwood’s original sketch of Albus Dumbledore’s costume is shown alongside the film’s final version, worn by Jude Law.


For the character of Queenie Goldstein, Atwood showcased a hyperrealist variant of 1930s female fashion. To symbolize Queenie’s turn to the “dark side,” Atwood took the rosy tones of Queenie’s costumes in previous films and saturated them with deeper, jeweled tones.

This is her more serious, somber look. I didn’t want to do, ‘Oh, well, she’s dark — so she’s going to wear black.’ I wanted it to still have a richness to it and something that reflected power, but in a different, moodier way.


Queenie Goldstein Costume Sketch

Atwood’s original sketch of Queenie Goldstein’s costume is shown alongside the film’s final version, worn by Alison Sudol.


For the character of Jacob Kowalski, Atwood took his costume from previous films and made it more “everyman-ish.” She used Shetlands and similar materials to give more bulk and substance to his costume, given that actor Dan Fogler had lost some weight since shooting the last film.


Jacob Kowalski Costume Sketch

Atwood’s original sketch of Jacob Kowalski’s costume is shown alongside the film’s final version, worn by Dan Fogler.


For Eulalie “Lally” Hicks, Atwood originally shows her in a haggard navy-blue dress when she first appears to Jacob as a defenseless woman being harassed. Afterward, though, Atwood wanted to bring out strong African red and orange tones and did so for Lally’s tweed suit costume for the rest of the film.


Lally Hicks Costume Sketch

Atwood’s original sketch of Lally Hicks’s costume is shown alongside the film’s final version, worn by Jessica Williams.


Which costume in the film was your favorite? Let us know in the comments!


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