Terry Dresbach

Outlander Costume Designer



I’m having a hard time trying to figure out how to do this season. There are soooooo many costumes, there is no way to cover them all after each episode. So I think I will just have to do the best I can with the time available. Whatever we miss, I can always come back around and cover in the next droughtlander.

There are there are enough costumes in S2 to cover 5 droughtlanders.

If there is something that enough people are requesting, I’ll do a post on it. Put the request on Twitter.

for anyone who hasn’t read before, I try to cover each costume with as much detail as possible, I also do posts on random experiences and thoughts. Whatever comes to mind.

Last thing…

Last season the blog was a pretty pleasant place, but last season had very little off screen drama.

That said, this is MY house. I have a zero tolerance against toxic, rude behavior. Questions and civil criticism or disagreement is absolutely welcome. But in order to post a question, it has to be approved. If it is rude or unkind, hurtful, then it won’t get approved. Pretty simple. If you come to my house, you cannot spit on the floor.

okay, that’s that. Let’s get started…

**** well, maybe I shouldn’t have sent that yet! My laptop is in the shop, and I thought I could post from my pad. But without photoshop, it is hard to modify the pics to the right size. I am working on it!!!!

40 thoughts on “Hmmmmmmmmmm.

  1. sara elizabethsara elizabeth

    Gah, Terry (if I may be so informal!) I don’t even have words for what I’m reading! I have an incredibly busy twitter feed (mostly because I only remember to check it once a week so I never see anything as it occurs) and besides talking to my best friend of over 20yr about our love of Outlander (she is the reason I now have the 1st book in my hands!! (I love love love the show and didn’t want to be influenced by what was or was not included in the books so reading a book after each television series has aired)) and trying to convince my mum to watch it…..I have little to no interaction with the “fandom” at large (although they seem like lovely folks) so reading there has been drama and badness….makes me sad. I was so entranced by the S1 costumes I sought you out just to bask in your talent and appreciate your friendliness towards us over S1 and the comments here have always been so positive………..besides the occasional tweet towards you to praise your work that’s about as close as I get to the community. Droughtlander was rubbish and I’m glad it is over. I look forward to whatever you choose to share and hope you continue to post here since I find the behind the scenes process almost more interesting than the on camera stuff.

    Hoping you only find positivity as you watch S2 play out on screen!


  2. AvatarElaine

    So exciting! I love hearing the background stories with the costumes, such as when you were digging though the trash for scraps, etc. Probably not much of that this time, though. The shoe making process would also be interesting. Heck, I’ll like anything you want to talk about!

  3. Avatarellenchristine

    anything at all is appreciated. the Saks windows were such a thrill….the details! You are single-handedly revving up the costume industry engines, and as collateral effect, haute couture will benefit, too.

  4. peggyvanslppeggyvanslp

    Terry, If the presentation you did at the writer’s bloc is any indication, we have a wonderful blog season ahead of us! Thank you for sharing the adventures of the Costume Team. By the way, I am assuming you would like suggestions posted to @OutlanderCostum, correct? Looking forward to photos, drawings, tidbits, explanations, and, well, whatever’s on your mind.

  5. AvatarDanielle

    Darling Madame D, thank you for all you do on the show, both on and off camera, AND for taking time to spend with us here in your e-house. In a world where I can’t find the time to do all the things I enjoy, it always floors me when people make the time to do (post) something negative. As my beloved Mom used to say, “If you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all.” Thanks/Taing/Merci! Danielle (Los Angeles)

  6. AvatarConnie Sandlin

    Whatever you want to share and whenever you have time to share it, we’ll be here to enjoy it and ask even more questions! I’m really looking forward to learning more!

  7. AvatarJaimesGrannie

    Ms. Dresbach,

    Any negative comments about the work done for the costuming in Outlander, Season 1 or 2, should be thrown out as soon as they are seen, in my humble opinion. I am 68 yrs old and began watching television at the age of 9 yrs old on a very small diagonal black and white screen! This is when television was just being put out for people to watch in the first place! I say all this to let everyone reading this comment know that “in the beginning” there was television”, then whatever comments made could be put into perspective from there! I think your creations are absolute perfection! There just aren’t any negative comments that could be made!!!!! Perfection in every way, ma’am!!! They are just exquisite! And this comment is just from what I have seen during very quick views during previews for the new season 2!!! Oh my, Cait wears them to perfection as well! Her modeling days have helped her carry herself perfectly for them as well! Ms. Dresbach, I am just quivering with anticipation to really see those gowns that are coming, the red one (oh my), the brown one, etc, etc.!!! I really can’t wait to see them in color, on Cait and the other actors, including the guys as well, and see the flow and movement, the accessories, the hair and makeup that all go with them and see the scenes with all of that above! Thank you for all your hard work to you, ma’am, to your crew and everyone there at Outlander! From grubby to pristine, they are all just perfection! Well, done! If you don’t get an award this year (you should have last year) then I won’t watch anymore awards shows, period! With many Blessings from JaimesGrannie, a fan of verra long ago!

  8. AvatarApril

    Hi Terry,

    Which ever costumes you decide to start off with will be fine with everyone, I’m sure. I personally have faith that you as always will choose wisely. I can hardly wait to start reading about the thoughts behind them. I’m already anticipating an ‘Outlander Costume Designer’ award for you and your team for Season 2!

  9. Avatarwoollyheaded

    Firstly I would like to say thank you for giving us fans your time. I will probably be a nuisance as I have so many questions, but initially do you think that you could include a bit about how you source your fabrics and whether you just look for the effect/pattern of the fabric or if you ever insist that it must be as true as possible to the actual fabric as would have been worn i.e. are you happy to work with faux silk as it would be easier to source & much cheaper to buy.

  10. Avatarwoolfarmgal

    Well… Last season I was joyous seeing all the knitted and wooly attire… This season the embroidery and silk! I saw your panel discussion the other day and loved your presentation and seeing the detailed embroidery. And also all the hand painted silks. My life is textiles, I can’t get enough of them and you have no idea what a gift your blog is and howbI am enjoying seeing you take this project and run with it. The costuming is as an important character as Jamie and Claire. My son, who is an extra on many projects filmed here in Virginia… from John Adams, to Turn, to Mercy Street… hopes Outlander comes here when the story heads to the colonies. (Berkley Plantation would be a perfect location for Jocasta’s estate.) He loves the experience of the process of building his character with the costumes. He has been a town beggar to a British soldier. Anyway… Ignore all negativity.. Can’t imagine there would be any.

  11. Avatarsandy46112

    Every picture I’ve seen of this season knocks my socks off. The costumes are beautiful! I was wondering how many yards of material is going into the big skirts of this season. The red dress, for instance, how many hours is in a dress like that? Does it make you sad that these wonderful costumes might never be worn again?

  12. AvatarLynnLouise

    Thank you for taking the time to share your talent and creativeness. So looking forward to further details and discussions. It is sad that you have to make a statement about people being rude or cruel.
    Anyway, can’t wait to hear all about the amazing costumes this S2.

  13. katejlongokatejlongo

    Hi Terry, you and your group did a fabulous job. Just amazing. I am wondering what steps are taken to have the shoes, boots (in general footwear) made. Specifically, Cait’s red shoes, Sam’s boots and extra’s footwear.

    PS: I am jealous of your teams embroidery machine. I have the Brother that is one step below.

  14. boisebooksboisebooks

    Hello to all, and thanks for beginning our next adventure here in your house. Amen to zero tolerance… As we listened to your presentation at the writers’ bloc I was struck by how LONG ago you had to start the season 2 process…as we are just beginning to view and appreciate season 2 your head must already be planning, imagining…
    We are thrilled you take the time for this…and we so appreciate you sharing. Merci bien!

  15. AvatarIrene1

    Thank you for all you have done. I am totally in awe of all of the work you and your staff have done, and for the incredible talent shown in the thousands of costumes. I’m still trying to get over the wedding dress, and there are so many beautiful costumes since then! Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!

  16. Avatarjoanne1202

    i have to say i did love the white blouse,cable sweater vest and skirt ensemble. sophisticated yet chic. in my mind that is exactly what i would picture claire wearing in that time period.

  17. AvatarAnnaLivia

    I would say talk about pieces you take particular pleasure or interest in. We will enjoy whatever you want to mention!
    Thank you and your staff for your very hard work. I am delighted the show, and the costumes, are getting more recognition this season.

    1. Avatarcfinklein

      The writers of the show have nothing over you, dear Terry. I have saved numerous entries you have posted purely because you share your piece of this story so beautifully every single time. Now, the costumes are breathtaking! Even the background ones shine as a result of your marvelous imagination. Oh, to be able to “play” in your world. Yes, each & every one demands amazing hours of work and dedication but the end results are show stopping. The infamous “red dress” from what I’ve glimpsed via trailers & previews glows and I can hardly wait to watch Cait dance & frolic in it. Jamie as well looks glorious in his finery. You want to know what it is about this remarkable series that captures our endless imaginations? The costumes and details that glow from every corner draw your watchers in demanding more than a single viewing to soak in all the stunning effects. From the music and marvelous acting, incredible sets and then the glue of the gorgeous clothing = oh my! We are truly in OZ at every moment and I for one am LOVING it!!!!

  18. AvatarKachka

    Like a previous commenter, I hesitate to address you as “Terry” yet it seems so right. Your blogs have captured me from the start, bringing back a previous life in fashion design. I am in awe of your talent and professionalism. So glad that STARZ allows you the budget to DO IT RIGHT. That you have accomplished so much within the time constraints boggles me. I rewatch the shows for all the wonderful detail in costume, setting, props – well, everything. The acting talent, script and treatment of both the sensitive and the sensational topics are outstanding. Your post about Saks took me back to a two-year gig in that same window trimming department. operating out of the Saks basement. What a memory gift for me. Thank you over and over again. Looking forward to seeing your talent express itself in S2.

  19. Avatarbrdgrl1

    Way to go girl!!!! Your house, your rules and you’re right, there is no place for all that negative junk here. Thank you for that. I LOVE this blog and LOVE your designs. Thanks for making this place even more pleasant. Can’t wait to see what’s next!

  20. Avatarjennmc725

    I *SO* look forward to your posts! I’m CEO of a company & I drop everything to see what you’re posting. (Don’t tell my staff, as I make fun of them for giving into their obsessions). WOOWOO! Love me some Outlander! Tried to plan my NYC trip to see the windows, but missed it by 2 days. 🙁

  21. AvatarNorahl

    Tobias Menzies’ performance on the first episode of season 2 was amazing. As dazzling as his performace was it did not distract me from his wonderful costume.. The fitting on the drape of the pants were nothing sort of perfection!

  22. AvatarJaneAnn

    I am sooooo impressed with ALL the attention to authentic detail throughout the whole Outlander TV world. Your costumes are out of this world. Thank you for loving the books the way I do, and for making them come to life. You and your team are the best. Now….I’ll just sit back and marvel at the show week after week.

  23. Avatarcalamarali

    I love reading all about how you and your team created the amazing costumes for the show. It is truly remarkable seeing how you arrived at decisions, your inspirations or hearing the story of how many buttons were needed this season. Watching the TV Academy presentation was extremely informative as well as entertaining. There isn’t a show airing today that shares this kind of information. Thank you.

  24. AvatarSarah K

    I was in awe of your season one costumes that were absolutely fabulous! This season is breathtaking and every episode is Emmy winning! Fingers crossed that you are nominated!

  25. Katiscotch22Katiscotch22

    Terry, thank you so much for taking the time to come here and tell us about all the gorgeous costumes. I’m happy to know that it isn’t just me that has trouble posting things. I have to say I was thrilled to see you on the recent panel. You and Ron are the real life Jamie and Claire. I’m looking forward to your next post 😀

    1. AvatarDraper


      I was hoping the discussion boards might spring into life again with the start of season 2 but I guess people are very happy with the facebook option instead.

      This may be a lightbulb moment for me (or maybe not!) but the neckline of Claire’s nightdress in hospital was so similar to the dress she was wearing when she first went through the stones, the blanket on the bed so similar to the plaid she sheltered under on the first horse ride to Leoch with Jamie, and her blue 1940s coat which suddenly seemed too big for her…all to emphasise that she is once again a stranger in an alien world albeit one she was once part of and to remind us of the parallels between her 18th and 20th century lives?

      If I am thinking along the right lines then it really is like being given a whole new language/subtext to read along with a thousand and one little clues to put together. Feeling pretty dim not to have caught on before but accurate costumes are a delight in themselves (my excuse). It was Frank’s brightly coloured tie when they left the plane that made the penny drop.

      Best wishes for a successful season two, Cassie

  26. Avatar

    Ha! I’m not on Twitter, so I guess I will just read along! Looking forward to another season of discussion!

  27. Avatarbahanson

    Thank you for inviting us all into your lovely home! I am excited for the next season as everyone else and your costumes are one of the main reasons because they are so much a part of the wonderful story. Your communication with everyone on the costumes is so very enlightening. They are like small gifts in a Christmas stocking that I want to spend time with and enjoy. Whatever and however you wish to share is appreciated. The SHOES are something that make me sit up and take notice! Thank you to you and your team for working for very hard to make such a lovely show. It is appreciated.

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