Black Swan Costumes: Rodarte’s Original Sketches

Kerry Pieri

I think I’ve thoroughly expressed that I think Black Swan is an unequivocally beautiful film. Natalie Portman’s face not withstanding, the exquisite costumes by Kate and Laura Mulleavy of Rodarte are the cause and the effect of that ethereal beauty.
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WWD posted sketches of some of the 40 pieces these California design geniuses created for the ballet film gone mad. Among them, the character of Von Rothbarts evil alter-ego, created from waxy black feathers, crow-like in their ominous feel. We imagined him like a mechanical bird his breast is even padded out like a bird, Laura explained. The girls were influenced by Degas’ bronze ballerina sculpture for the ballet costumes, but really the pieces are just so perfectly Rodarte from the custom designed silk tulle white gown (worn by Portman) to the incredible knitwear that had me sort of dying to invest in awesome leg warmers.
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The gown

Is costuming in their future? “As designers, our job is something so seasonal…In film, you make pieces of clothing that go down in history.” Laura explains. Sounds promising.

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