At a resort in Sicily, season 2 of “The White Lotus” sees well-heeled travelers take a stab at Italian glamor. They spin wine here, wear Prada there. Jennifer Coolidge’s character Tanya cries in a Puccini opera.
And then there are the show’s Gen Xers, who eschew “Madame Butterfly” to go clubbing.
According to the show’s costume designer, Alex Bovaird, the costumes of the season’s five youngest characters were meant to reflect a combination of boldness and experimentation. Mrs. Bowwire influencers, Instagram it-brands and “Love Island” Contestants — including Misfires — created more than 70 looks that young people could realistically wear.
A 44-year-old Ms. Bowiret previously designed costumes for Jordan Peele’s “Nope” and was nominated for an Emmy for her work on the first season of the HBO anthology series “The White Lotus.” Mike White. That season’s portrayal of Gen Z, performed by Sidney Sweeney and Brittany O’Grady, sounded off. The horrifying truth For many viewers.
But Ms Bovirt has never experienced anything like Portia, Tanya’s assistant, the character she said sparked the most intense online reaction of her career. Played by Hayley Lu Richardson, Portia rolls her eyes in heaven in an array of on-trend, off-kilter outfits that believably create a Twitter sensation. “Portia in white lotus robes, like an urban disrobing unit” is reading One of the kind comments.
Ms. Portia got some of her pieces from Urban Outfitters. Bowiret saw your average tweets and had his own thoughts. Ahead of Sunday’s Season 2 finale, he shared them in a video call from Reykjavik, Iceland, where he’s rounding up the “True Detective” cast in parkas and snow boots. “There’s not a flip-flop in sight,” he said.
This interview has been edited and condensed.
How did you approach dressing so many young characters this season?
I love dressing younger characters, especially if it’s contemporary. As the older characters in “White Lotus” are brought together and composed, and they discover who they are, the younger characters express themselves in a more adventurous, chaotic way.
How realistic did you want their wardrobes to be compared to the super-sexy teens of “Euporia”?
“Euphoria,” though I haven’t seen it, seems perhaps not so realistic. For “The White Lotus,” we try to make it realistic, but elevate it and go a little too far. Mike White loves color and print, and he likes to fill the frame with a lot of passion. He thinks of the “white lotus” as a fever dream. So even though they’re really grounded, they’re a little over the top. It’s a joke.
Welcome back to ‘The White Lotus’
The second season of “The White Lotus,” Mike White’s satire about privilege set at a luxury resort, is currently streaming on HBO.
How did you create Portia’s messy look?
Portia’s look came from looking at Instagram influencers and how they put things together in a haphazard yet unintentionally cool way. A girl I follow is called Wuzg00d She wears very colorful ensembles. But we decided that Portia wouldn’t always score – we’d always try and do one or two things that were a little off. If she’s wearing a cute sundress, we’ll make sure she has the wrong shoes or too many accessories. Portia is a little confused. She has no money, makes some bad choices and spends all her time on TikTok. So we wanted her clothes to reflect that.
Were there any differences in the way you dressed this season’s Gen Z characters and last season’s creepy twins Olivia (Sydney Sweeney) and Paula (Brittany O’Grady)?
Olivia and Paula are definitely cool. Portia isn’t really that cool. They’re all the same, with the same demographics of manipulating their wardrobes with different ideas and putting them together in a kind of careless way.
Were you surprised by the overwhelming response online?
I don’t know about surprise, but definitely impressed. It really seems to rub people the wrong way, but that’s the Twittersphere. I love the comments that she is a character. Sometimes she’s not very pretty; Other times I legitimately think she’s cute. It’s the way everyone says it at the same time.
I think I’m a bit protective of Portia. When I was 25, I went to Las Vegas and bought a hat at a gas station and wore it all weekend. A really scary red cowboy hat that I thought was really amazing. So it was fun to do a character that goes a little bit wrong, but also fun.
Where did you buy Portia’s clothes?
I bought items from House of Sunny and Urban Outfitters. It’s a lot older from the late 90s or early 2000s. A bucket hat is something Haley Lu loves to wear. I saw her dinosaur choker necklace in a shop in Rome. Everyone has some animal jewelry or symbolic print because of the common commentary on sex and love. There are a lot of sexist, primal little easter eggs out there.
How did you dress Portia’s contrasting love interests Jack (Leo Woodall) and Albie (Adam DeMarco)?
I wanted it to be clear that when Jack arrived, he was the bad guy and Albie was the safe bet. For Jack, I was inspired by the contestants.”Love Island.” I think I’ve seen every season of “Love Island” outside of the UK, and they’re all wearing little short shorts and tight t-shirts and bold colors. For Albie, I looked at what some kids from Stanford would wear, and New Balance and Under Armor shirts. Like, there was a lot of normcore, nothing too tasteful. I also tried to dress Alby up like a little boy. He wears cargo shorts and tube socks and has no game until he meets Lucia.
How do two young locals, Lucia (Simone Tabasco) and Mia (Beatriz Grano), dress compared to the tourists?
They wear the key a little bit. It’s very colorful and unobtrusive, but in a bit more of a Eurotrash way. They buy clothes from small shops in Corso, so my approach is, “What would they buy if they had the money?” In the evening, they get brighter and brighter as they go.
Tell me about Mia’s shredded “California” T-shirt.
It was from a thrift store in Rome. I thought it had a certain “I do drugs all night, then I’m going to another party on the beach” quality. Mia and Lucia both dream of leaving Sicily. Lucia especially likes to go to LA
Are there any clues as to how the season will end in these outfits?
You should see. I mean, there are definitely some things – more I can tell you. But I will reveal the result.
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