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Inside Queen Charlotte’s Style and 18th-Century Natural Hair Journey – The Hollywood Reporter



[This story contains mild spoilers from the first two episodes of Queen Charlotte.]

5 minutes into Shonda RhimesBridgerton prequel Queen Charlotte, a younger Charlotte, performed by India Ria Amarteifio, is named “Ridiculous to the eye” by her brother Adolphus as she sits barely transferring behind a carriage. Charlotte, displeased, each by her circumstances — being married off to the king of England — and her apparel, delivers a terse response that units the tone for what is going to come to outline her character all through the collection: Her feisty spirit and her trend sense.

“I am wearing lyonnaise silk encrusted with Indian sapphires working with an overlay of 200-year-old lace,” Charlotte retorts. “Apparently an excessive amount of motion could cause the sapphires to shred the lace. If that weren’t sufficient, the robe sits atop a bespoke underpinning product of whalebone.

“Yes, whalebone, brother,” she provides a second later as he stares again in astonishment, “The bones of whales. Whales died so I could look like this.”

No whales, or their bones for that matter, had been used within the precise creation of the gemmed bodice of the plush mild blue robe the long run queen wears within the scene, however co-costume designers Laura Frecon and Lyn Paolo did go to nice lengths to drag off the ornate seems worn all through the Netflix collection. That included a purchase order order for 175 corsets which, together with the entire interval underpinnings, had been made particularly for the present.

India Amarteifio as younger Queen Charlotte.

Liam Daniel/Netflix

“We wanted it to be history meets high fashion,” says Frecon of Queen Charlotte’s fashion path.

Through Zoom, Frecon and Paolo, who each labored on the origin collection, demonstrated to Rhimes how they’d carry forth the idea, drawing inspiration from the 2014 Met Gala theme Charles James: Past Trend primarily based on the Twentieth-century couturier who was identified for his structured ball robes.

“We had worked all day on Bridgerton and then were holding up mood boards to the computer trying to explain what our plan would be, should we be lucky enough to be invited to do the show. Halfway through, Shonda was like, ‘Yeah, love it. Thank you. Great. Let’s do it,’” Paolo remembers, laughing. “That was a great gift from Shonda.”

Within the sketches Paolo and Frecon confirmed Rhimes, Charlotte’s hair was imagined as pure from the outset. The distinction to the grandiose wigs that later outline the queen pushes ahead the lead character’s narrative of coming into her personal energy as a ruler.

“We all agreed that it would be a journey,” says hair and make-up designer Nic Collins. “She’s not coming in as this big personality with these large wigs. She starts with natural hair. She’s in a foreign land, she’s in an arranged marriage that she doesn’t want to be in. It must have been terrifying for her. Those were the things we were considering.”  

For 2-thirds of the primary episode, Charlotte’s hair is principally styled in curly textured updos, together with the scene the place she tries to leap over the palace wall to keep away from marrying the king. She’s caught by younger king George who declares, “The choice is entirely up to her,” after Adolphus witnesses their change and makes an attempt to guarantee George that Charlotte needs to marry him. The notion of company warms Charlotte as much as the king and the thought of being his spouse, main her to go ahead with the organized marriage.

(L to R) India Amarteifio as Young Queen Charlotte, Corey Mylchreest as Young King George in Queen Charlotte: A Bridgerton Story.

Amarteifio with Corey Mylchreest as younger King George.

Liam Daniel/Netflix

On the wedding ceremony ceremony, Charlotte presents with a wonderfully coiffed head of coils that’s accentuated by a row of curls framing her face, a element that’s true to the time interval, Collins notes. The jeweled tiara she wears was handmade by head milliner Jen Lewis and head jeweler Steven Rogers.

“We wanted to show the afro and its beauty,” Collins says. “That was important. It’s her decision, it’s her choice. It’s like she’s just let her hair down and it sits in its glory.”

The ivory gown product of duchess satin that Charlotte wears was impressed by Queen Elizabeth II. “Laura and I went to Kensington Palace and saw Queen Elizabeth’s wedding gown, which had this amazing iconography from each colony. We thought, wouldn’t it be great if we did this, so we incorporated the Tudor and the Yorkshire Rose into the hem along with some other very British pieces of iconography,” Paolo remembers. “That embroidery matches the embroidery on George’s wedding suit. So, they’re bonded.”

That bond is straight away threatened when, after the marriage, Charlotte is knowledgeable that she’s to return to a separate dwelling slightly than dwell with the king. Devastated by this information, she’s proven alone, cradling her knees to her chest in a mattress meant for 2. Her hair hanging freely round her face.

India Amarteifio as Young Queen Charlotte in Queen Charlotte: A Bridgerton Story.

Amarteifio as younger Queen Charlotte.

Liam Daniel/Netflix

“She goes to this strange house that she doesn’t realize she’s going to and there’s this whole host of people that don’t look like her, who don’t know her, and she’s just kind of left,” Collins explains. “They probably would have attended to her, but who knows if they knew how to handle her hair on the first night? That’s something that they probably learned to do with her.”

That’s exactly what occurs as Charlotte, once more, embraces the ability she has, even in circumstances which can be considerably out of her management. “In episode two, there’s a sequence of maids handling her hair, putting it up, wrapping it up for bed, putting the pill papers in, and it just plays out so beautifully within the larger story,” provides Collins.  

Pure hair can current challenges on set, notably because it pertains to lighting, inflicting kinds to lose their form and texture on digicam, notes Collins, who added shades of golden brown to the pure wigs that had been made for Amarteifio to make sure the curls would decide up mild. The actress had a base of three pure wigs made for her to guard her personal hair from the harm of every day styling whereas taking pictures. “We mentioned we’ll do no matter it takes to do it, Collins remembers, as she emphasizes the need of displaying pure hair textures within the collection.

“It’s something that you don’t see. I’ve never seen it before in a period drama. And that’s what this was all about, creating images that you get to see now,” she says. “These people exist, and they inspire other people. That’s the beauty of the whole Bridgerverse.”

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