Terry Dresbach

Outlander Costume Designer

Master Raymond


He was always by my favourite and there is no costume I have looked forward to doing more on Outlander.

Let’s start with the mood boards.

Mst. Raymond

Master RaymondWe were pretty deeply into embroidery at that point, really playing with what we could do.

I wanted him to have just one costume. His pharmacists coat. Does Master Raymond take it off and hang it on a hook at night, or does he lie down in a pallet in the back of his shop, never taking the magical thing off?

I thought that I would like to tell a story about his work. So two images illustrate principles of alchemy. The Tree Of Knowledge and The Hand Of Mysteries. The other two are diseases and the herbs that cured them.

The Coat:



IMG_1064 (1)We decided to represent the disease with a monster, having found a fantastic array of monsters while doing research.

The Bird represents Yellow Fever, placing his yellow claw into the eye. One of the symptoms of yellow fever was that the white of the eye would turn bright yellow.

The other panel is Gout. A delightful Gout monster is gnawing on the inflamed foot.

The herbs which are supposed to cure it, are woven into the disease. I don’t have my notes with me, on which herbs they are, but it is not hard to find the info, if you are interested.

I don’t remember the genesis of the back, if it was a compilation of images we’d found, or if it was based on something we found. I fell in love with these illustrations of potion bottles. There was also a lot of skull imagery. An easy combination.

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Work in progress-



  • A very special shout out to my Embroidery team – Liz, Fiona, Julia and Francesca, and to Helen Galogly, our textile artist. They are the best.


53 thoughts on “Master Raymond

  1. nimo

    So happy that you’ve said something about Master Raymond! I’m in love with this coat! At first I thought it was a vest, but a coat is even better. I thought I had seen a skull on the back but wasn’t sure. I’ve always liked the shape of the skull without the jaw bone…less icky I think. Gorgeous embroidery and looks like a bit of paintwork. It says a lot in an extraordinarily beautiful way, Terry. Thanks!

  2. sunquest78

    Master Raymond’s lab coat is one of my favourites, as well! I was hoping you would do a focus on it. Thank you for sharing the close ups and stories that support the embroidery, The stories are just as interesting as the sewing.

  3. Sophie Slim

    Stunning! The embriodery team really bought this to life! I had never heard about ageing clothes until I read your blogs mentioning it, what a fascinating process! The coat in progress and the finished result are two very different garments! Amazing!

  4. Draper

    I’m enchanted. Enchanted by many things: the research, the planning, the imagery, the textile painting, the embroidery itself or the ageing of the finished waistcoat (I spy some darning). I could only catch glimpses of all of this on the screen.

    Cannot imagine the number of hours it took. The beautiful techniques used to embroider the tree alone must have taken forever. There’s something slightly sinister about these symbols too, something primeval and pagan. Wow.

  5. Connie Sandlin

    Stunned, flabbergasted (in a good way), and enchanted. I love the gout monster, and I wish that my mother (who had to deal with gout a few times) were still alive to see it. Well done, all!

  6. Moz

    Love the documentation of mood boards through to the finished garment and close ups, with commentary to take us along the journey with you. Beautifully inspired piece. TY

  7. lizcostume (@lizcostume)

    Thanks for the shout out Terry!
    The herbs that were used in the panels were Goutwort (Ground Elder) for Gout
    and Camphor for Yellow Fever
    This was the first major project I worked on after “cracking” the software. Suddenly a whole new realm of possibilities had opened up to me, satin stitch in the right directions, the equivalent of silk shading using long and short stitch, adding layers of stitch on top of each other, joining smaller sections to get larger panels, having real sized backgrounds in the software to layer sections on to for sizing and orientation…
    And of course doing the research on 18th Century diseases, which had visible symptoms, and some sort of treatment available was GREAT fun (for me anyway – perhaps not so much for other users of the office printer!)

  8. Donna

    When I saw Master Raymond it was like WOW. I knew this had to be a whole blog on its own. The cost is spectacular and blown away with the research you did to make th coat. Thanks for sharing the process

  9. katejlongo

    Question about the embroidery. Do your artists scan in designs and the digitize the artwork for the embroidery machine? The work is just magnificent. I am so glad that you posted this montage. Absolutely beautiful and thought provoking. Thank you.

    1. lizcostume (@lizcostume)

      Yes, we do. I did the initial research on ghastly diseases that had visual symptoms and 18th Century treatments. Terry designed the panels of the coat and Helen drew the artwork, which was scanned and then we each digitised our designs in sections to be able to fit into the machines hoops. The gents’ cutters marked out the fabric for the panels without cutting it, we embroidered and then it went back to the cutters to be made up into the garment.

  10. Color every day

    I loved this work of art the moment I saw it. The embroidery has me going to my machine to play. Your mix of fabric creates such a mood to the garment &it’s owner. Thank you thank you thank you.

  11. Brooke

    so much amazingness!!!! I was wondering when I first saw this what the history was behind M. Raymond’s acquisition of such a piece. Who made it for him? How did he get them to do such witchcraft? It makes him so much more ancient than he ‘seems’………

  12. Catullus_1000

    Without this blog we would have missed so much! As soon as Master Raymond appeared on screen, my first thought was “Oh! I can’t wait to see the details in Terri’s blog!” This is one of the greatest costumes of all time. So much to take in. Truly a compliment to Mr. Pinon’s spot on portrayal.

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  14. gsmith

    I’m sitting here trying to find words to express not only my gratitude, but just what an amazing artist you are! All words fall short, but I’ll try anyway. AMAZING! INCREDIBLE! BEAUTIFUL! BRILLIANT! I like others, have paused my DVR at that moment we see Master Raymond’s coat. I couldn’t wait to see your post about this, knowing we’d be blessed with the story and the pictures. Thank you so much Terry!

  15. woolfarmgal

    Woo-hoo! When I saw Raymond’s coat in the second episode.. I turned to my husband and told him that I could not wait to hear what the story is behind this coat… I knew a blog entry on this was pending…and here it is. Terry, you do not disappoint! Fascinating garment for a fascinating character. I can tell how much work and fun must have gone into this. I am in awe of the creativity.

  16. M&M

    That is really so unbelievably amazing………just insane! I’m just in awe, not only of the coat, but all the thought that went into it. I’m gobbsmacked! 🙂 I have a strong feeling this is Diana’s favorite piece! So thankful you are posting all of these, what a treat for everyone. Terry, you and your crew……. WOW!

  17. angelasassoinlondon

    When we got those glimpses of his coat in Episode two – I was so excited to see the detail! I couldn’t wait to see it in close up on this blog. It’s just so wonderful the story it tells. Thank you so much for putting in the detail and thought and making it so special. I applaud the whole team on this.

  18. mque

    Master Raymond’s costume was a true masterpiece. When I saw it, I knew that he chose it to project his profession & commitment to his customers & his neighbours. He has knowledge which he uses, but he also needed his clients to believe in him as well so that coat is like advertising . AMAZING. Thank you, Terry & team! I want to study this & learn all its secrets as well as the different techniques used (embroidery, fabric painting & others). Bravo!

  19. bunhon

    This coat is magnificent! Such an amazing amalgam of threads, of stories woven into one fantastic piece. It seems to be the antithesis of the coat Claire wore when she performed as The Sassanach or maybe they’re just two sides of the same coin.

  20. larrouxgirl

    If I had such a garment, I would never take it off. I can only imagine the joy of being able to look at such a fantastic thing and know I had contributed to its beauty. Kudos to everyone who imagined it, touched it, made it magnificent.

  21. womanofthemists

    I absolutely love his coat! The designs are quite incredible. I LOVE looking at them! Mystical, Magickal! I appreciate all you share with us Terry. Knowing the back story of these designs added so much. You are generous. You are verra gifted at what you do. I love your realness, what you say and what you share. Outlander would not be near as amazingly wonderful without your costumes! They add such richness. Love and Blessings to YOU Terry. xoxoxoxo

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  23. moniquerose

    Incredible! Thank you for sharing this. The whole viewing experience (and the rereading of the text) becomes so much richer. The Bird reminds me of the Plague Doctor.

  24. MCatherine

    As you refer to ‘magical’ when speaking of Master Raymond’s coat, I am reminded of when I wore daily for 6 weeks to radiation therapy a purple sequined vest with gold stars because I believed it represented magic and protection for me. Of course, what you have created is a Masterpiece.

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  26. Stunning! I loved it the moment I saw it too! The brown fabric almost reminds me of a lightweight oilcloth….is it linen though??

  27. jclasell

    In June of 2015 we were at a conference in San Francisco. At the time there was traveling exhibit at the Legion of Honor from the Brooklyn Museum Collection at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. One of the exhibits was the Zodiac Jacket by Elsa Schiaparelli (French, Born Italy, 1890-1973) The particular item I am thinking of every time I see your Master Raymond’s jacket is described as follows: “Deep blue silk velvet, rhinestones, clear plastic star-shaped paillettes, and gold and silver strip embroidery.”

    I remember thinking of you the entire time I was there. I know we saw many Dior inspired creations and we also saw some fantastic shoes and other items of clothing. You should visit there some day! (If I could attach a picture I would, but if you want a link, here it is. http://www.metmuseum.org/art/collection/search/156060

    Bottom line…I LOVE Master Raymond’s coat! Especially the really cool secret messages.

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