News, Culture & Society

Dynasty reboot costume designer talks to FEMAIL

After 26 long years, Dynasty is back on the airwaves! 

The drama about two mega-rich rival families, the Carringtons and the Colbys – is returning to the small screen tomorrow night on the CW with an entirely new cast, a contemporary look and a present-day attitude.

FEMAIL chatted with the show’s costume designer, Meredith Markworth-Pollack, on how she’s modernizing the looks of the characters on the iconic ’80s soap reboot.

It’s back: After 26 long years, Dynasty is back on the air waves! The drama about two mega-rich rival families, the Carringtons and the Colbys – is returning to the small screen tomorrow night with an entirely new cast, a contemporary look and a present-day attitude

While the salacious and seductive reboot is executive produced by ‘Gossip Girl’ creators Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage, Meredith didn’t feel the pressure to live up to GG’s legendary style.

‘I felt more pressure to do a remake and to do the original Dynasty justice,’ she said. But unlike the drama we knew from 1981, the reboot is geared toward a younger demographic. 

‘It has to stand alone from the original. It has to be fresh and contemporary but still appeal to an older crowd.’

The lead characters: While the salacious and seductive reboot is executive produced by 'Gossip Girl' creators Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage, Meredith didn't feel the pressure to live up to GG's legendary style

The lead characters: While the salacious and seductive reboot is executive produced by ‘Gossip Girl’ creators Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage, Meredith didn’t feel the pressure to live up to GG’s legendary style

‘I had to figure out who the character is in modern time,’ she said. After collaborating with the show’s creators, Meredith tells us that she dove head first into original series and designed inspirational story boards for every character.

She works closely with the actors to come up with their individual styles.’They have to feel empowered in their costumes, it really helps them get into character,’ she said.

Meredith pays homage to the iconic ’80s soap opera by giving fashion nods to the decadent decade’s exaggerated silhouettes and flashy trends, all in a current way. 

Elizabeth Giles (left) plays spoiled heiress Fallon Carrington, originally played by Pamela Sue Martin

Elizabeth Giles (left) plays spoiled heiress Fallon Carrington, originally played by Pamela Sue Martin

Now and then: Elizabeth Giles (left) plays spoiled heiress Fallon Carrington, originally played by Pamela Sue Martin

‘The closet is a warehouse full of clothes,’ said Meredith. To achieve what Dynasty was fashion wise, the costume designer acquires garments from just about everywhere.

‘I shop locally in Atlanta (where the show is filmed), at consignment shops, Neiman Marcus, Saks and Jeffrey Atlanta. I also bring in vintage from all across the US and shop online at Farfetch and Moda Operandi.’

Borrowing from high-end showrooms isn’t always possible when filming a television show. ‘Being that we’re holding onto samples for months, we have to work with designers; Balmain will send samples from older seasons.’

Eye candy: Similar to the original series, 'it's a very fashion heavy show, so we have to push the envelope with fun over-the-top things that you're not accustomed to seeing on tv.'

Eye candy: Similar to the original series, ‘it’s a very fashion heavy show, so we have to push the envelope with fun over-the-top things that you’re not accustomed to seeing on tv.’

Similar to the original series, ‘it’s a very fashion heavy show, so we have to push the envelope with fun over-the-top things that you’re not accustomed to seeing on tv.’

The two female leads are Fallon Carrington and Cristal Flores, played by Elizabeth Giles and Nathalie Kelley, respectively.

Fallon, a spoiled heiress, is at odds with Cristal, a fierce Latina who is engaged to Fallon’s father Blake, played by Grant Show (former Melrose Place hottie). 

Cristal Flores (left) is a feisty Latina played by Nathalie Kelley. The original rolse was played by Linda Evans

Cristal Flores (left) is a feisty Latina played by Nathalie Kelley. The original rolse was played by Linda Evans

Present and past: Cristal Flores (left) is a feisty Latina played by Nathalie Kelley. The original rolse was played by Linda Evans

Grant Show (left), formerly of Melrose Place, plays the part of Blake Carrington, originally played by John Forsythe

Grant Show (left), formerly of Melrose Place, plays the part of Blake Carrington, originally played by John Forsythe

Dapper gents: Grant Show (left), formerly of Melrose Place, plays the part of Blake Carrington, originally played by John Forsythe 

‘The two women’s styles are very different, and I live vicariously through them,’ says Meredith. ”Cristal wears a soft palette of designers like Stella McCartney, Valentino and Juan Carlos, while Fallon favors sequins, structured silhouettes and bold pieces in gem tones by experimental labels like Alexandre Vauthier.’ 

While Meredith is in on all the latest trends, she reveals that the goal of a costume designer is to create in-the-moment fashion that’s timeless. ‘The shows that stick, the ones that people are still watching, are the ones that can achieve that.’   

When studying the original show and the fashions of that era, one thing that really stuck out for Meredith was the matching sets and power suits. ‘You’ll see a lot of that in the new series, plus furs, only we’re only using faux fur.’

SHOP COORDINATING SETS: 

Misa 3 Piece Crop Culotte & Duster Co-Ord Set by Boohoo, now $30; boohoo.com

Misa 3 Piece Crop Culotte & Duster Co-Ord Set by Boohoo, now $30; boohoo.com

Cream satin tropical pajama shirt by River Island, $40; riverisland.com

Cream satin tropical split pajama bottoms by River Island, $40; riverisland.com

Left: Cream satin tropical pajama shirt by River Island, $40; riverisland.com. Right: Cream satin tropical split pajama bottoms by River Island, $40; riverisland.com

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk