Terry Dresbach

Outlander Costume Designer

Claire Fraser – A new kind of collar




I don’t remember EXACTLY how this came to be.

I remember discussing with my team, new ways to play with scraps of fabric to make accessories, inspired by using leftover wool from the floor of the mill, to make Hugh Munro’s costume. One day, walking by the very talented Emily’s work table I found a square she had made of woven strips We decided to see if we could make it into a kind of fichu/collar.

That’s what I remember, but it is all a bit foggy.

I love this piece, and I believe it.










31 thoughts on “Claire Fraser – A new kind of collar

  1. Caleidh

    I fell in love with this first time I saw it. And weaving fabric scraps into a collar sounds just like something a thrifty Scot would do! Such talent on your team.

  2. chasa

    A behind the scenes photo of Cait wearing this collar was posted on the Outlander Instagram account many months ago…so memorable with that beautiful texture that when it popped up in the episode, I recalled it immediately. All of the texture in the costuming really helps to bring these characters to life!

  3. angelasassoinlondon

    Definitely noticed it on screen when I watched the episode – Due to the lighting, I thought it was an olive green and made of velvet – when it is actually a tweed.

    1. annalapping

      I thought the same thing, Angela. And I thought, “I have to get a close up of that – it’s not knitted, that’s woven fabric.” I want to make something like that, love the process.

  4. I love that collar…wouldn’t the same idea be great for pockets on a modern jacket?

  5. @punkiBrenda

    This piece stood out right away when it came onscreen.I love it noticed soon as she came on that it was different. Way to go with getting even more creative!

  6. jerseygirl52

    I love this collar, so beautiful and unique. Terry, you and your staff keep surprising us. When I saw this piece in the scene, I thought it went so well with the rest of Claire’s outfit. Wow!

  7. woolfarmgal

    Ooohlala! Texture galore with the woven wool strips…but favorite part is to examine up close and those lovely flecks of color with the neutral rich background. …..and the shape of the garment frames Clair’s face and brings out her coloring…pure visual joy.

  8. awabbit

    I saw the collar/fichu and thought– that is divine.
    I love the chunky texture and the multi-earthtone webbing textile she used. Simple and very effective.
    Please is it possible to have an idea to how many yards of the webbing are needed and how it was constructed?
    Thanks, Anne in NoHo

  9. Katiscotch22

    You guys are so creative. I loved this when I saw it on The Pricking of my Thumbs. What a novel way to use up “scraps” as you call the terry. You make me wish I had the opportunity to wear all these fashions 😀

  10. Solitaire

    Very cool! I thought it was velvet as well with the set lighting. Really ingenious… Are those selvedge edges, or was contrasting thread stitched to keep the edges from fraying? I love how it’s got a proper collar and is just tucked in like a fichu. Those of us who still have scrap bags could get really inspired…

  11. velosewer

    This is such a creative piece.
    I can here the ladies at the sewing guild ‘tut tut tutting’ at the unfinished edges. Just the type of work that I’d love to rile them with.

  12. Rebecca Hoffman

    This would be perfect for Wisconsin winters. I totally would wear it! I’m serious about you creating an Outlander inspired line of clothing for all of us to purchase.

  13. Captmorgnsgrl

    What a beautiful piece of work. You have so many talented people on your team. On screen it comes across looking like chenille or velvet. Thank you for the detailed pictures, it really brings out the workmanship that went into this piece.

  14. ChristinePincince

    my first thought was …. hmmm that cool warmer looks like something the magical Mrs Fitz would lovingly create for Clare as she so adores her and this is a piece obviously cleverly made with love

  15. ellenchristine

    thank you, THANK you for posting this. My class has been searching for projects for mountains of donated ribbons, and I had seen this and thought that it might be a great exercise for them. My ladies thank you for the picture. I have been getting screen shots of it from the first sec I saw it. Brilliant. Congrats. Kudos. and thank you once again, from my teacher’s heart.

  16. Connie Sandlin

    I thought it was woven from strips of leather! Thank you so much for posting the explanation and great photos. More amazing creativity, originality, and ingenuity from the Outlander costumer staff!

  17. bluesilk

    Logged on just to see Claire’s collar. It’s wonderful.
    Thank you so much for your website. Pure pleasure
    to see the costumes in detail and learn a little about
    the construction. Very generous of you to share.

  18. Purl99

    I so appreciate those who can take an idea and actually bring it to life. Although I feel I am creative this is my biggest struggle getting from idea to tangible. How do you do it? Or is it just how it works for you?

  19. freezersarecool


    I loved this the first time that I saw it – Ingenious use of material! It also struck me that you could do some wonderful variations on it, for instance using different coloured ribbons, possibly also of different widths to create a tartan effect. it would be rather sweet to see Claire with something made like this out of similar coloured ribbon/material to Jamie’s plaid tartan pattern.

  20. fleetinglogic

    The clothes have quickly become one of the reasons I love to watch and re-watch this show! I adore this collar. (Had me thinking of the way the Shakers used to weave their seats with Shaker tape.)

Leave a Reply