‘Girls’ Costume Designer Shopped In Brooklyn Thrift Stores For Realistic Ensembles

Jemima Kirke (Jessa Johansson), Lena Dunham (Hannah Horvath), and Zosia Mamet (Shoshanna Shapiro) in ’Girls.’
Photo: Via HBO’s ’Girls’ Facebook page

We have been waiting for (what feels like) our entire LIVES for the Girls show to premiere on HBO, and now that it finally did, we can happily say that it really does represent a 20-something’s life in Brooklyn (not to mention it’s filmed literally on the block we live on, NBD *hair flip*). The most realistic part of all, though, are those ensembles. Their no-frills outfits are reminiscent of a penny-pinching recent college grad who still has some expensive pieces left from their still-living-at-the-parents house wardrobe but want to mix it up with some cool, vintage pieces. Fashion Etc spoke with Girls costume designer Jenn Rogien, who has also worked on Bored To Death and The Good Wife, and she admits that this is definitely no Sex and the City wardrobe with Louboutins and Manolo Blahniks scattered throughout their closets. Affordability is key, and Jenn admitted that she *GASP* ACTUALLY stopped by some Brooklyn thrift stores to get the outfits absolutely perfect for their on-screen debut. She said, “If it seems right to go to Saks Fifth Avenue for some of the more special pieces, then that’s where we would go. If it seems more right to go to Atlantis Attic out in Williamsburg, we absolutely went out there. We were probably at Atlantis Attic and Beacon’s Closet for every episode because it’s the right stuff, that’s where those girls would go.” OMG, they’re just like us. :’)

Jemima Kirke (Jessa Johansson), Lena Dunham (Hannah Horvath), and Allison Williams (Marnie Michaels) in ’Girls.’
Photo: Via HBO’s ’Girls’ Facebook page

“We didn’t want to go to Bergdorf’s and buy [Marnie played by Allison Williams] a Dior suit because it didn’t make sense for the character,” Jenn continued. “That’s where we really relied on character and the actors to sort of feel it out as we were doing our fittings and see ’You know this is a great piece but it’s way outside of what Marnie would be able to afford. Can we find it Loehmann’s? Can we find something similar from Lord & Taylor?'” We totally respect their desire to keep the outfits low-key and realistic, but some people are criticizing their looks for being “truly awful.” Since we work in the fashion world, we obviously care WAY too much about what we wear, but not every gal in her 20s is wearing 5-inch wedge platforms and crazeball nail art on a daily basis. We like the realism of Girls, and for that, we’re full-blown supporters of seeing real life BFFs on TV.

Jemima Kirke (Jessa Johansson) in ’Girls.’
Photo: Via HBO’s ’Girls’ Facebook page

Jenn said when it came to picking their costume designer, HBO “really wanted someone that got what they were trying to do: that they weren’t trying to do a fashion show, they were not trying to redo Sex and the City, they were not trying to do Gossip Girl. The show wasn’t about clothes. It’s about the girls, and they really wanted someone who could get on board with that and really get that they were trying to do these kind of crazy girls who aren’t necessarily all that put together.” Amen to that! We’re excited to see a more refreshing take on TV fashion, and we think Girls is doing it jussstt right.

Lena Dunham (Hannah Horvath) in ’Girls.’
Photo: Via HBO’s ’Girls’ Facebook page

{via Fashion Etc}

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