How the Costumes in 'Get Out' Helped Tell the Story

Chris (DANIEL KALUUYA) with girlfriend Rose (ALLISON WILLIAMS) in Universal Picturesâ   â  Get Out,â   a speculative thriller from Blumhouse (producers of â  The Visit,â   â  Insidiousâ   series and â  The Giftâ  ) and the mind of Jordan Peele.  When a young African-American man visits his white girlfriendâ  s family estate, he becomes ensnared in a more sinister real reason for the invitation.

How the Costumes in 'Get Out' Helped Tell the Story

The devil is in the outfits.

Published March 23, 2017

Jordan Peele's Get Out is an instant classic that won't soon fade from our memories. After all, the themes explored in the film continue to plague America on a daily basis. By now, many have dissected the film and further unraveled its brilliance. However, there's one piece in particular that had yet to be investigated, a driving force in most visual projects: the costumes. Vogue sat down with Get Out's costume designer, Nadine Haders, to gain some insight into how the character's garb played a role in storytelling — and the way it intensified the film might surprise you. Below, the most illuminating quotes from the interview.  

Rose's suggestion of bringing "cozy clothes" was hardly innocuous.

"With Chris dating Rose, he really straddles two worlds even before he enters the Armitage estate. Blue was the color of his urban life, his true self. He wore the blue chambray shirt whenever he wasn’t at his apartment in Brooklyn, sort of as a signifier of where he came from and how he wants people to see him. At the Armitage’s house, his 'cozy clothes' are gray — you see him wearing this when he sits in the hypnosis session with Missy. It’s a color that exists in a world between black and white."

Some of the references didn't even make it into the film.

"I wanted to add in pops of red, so Rose is seen wearing a Where’s Waldo?-esque striped shirt and you couldn’t see them, but she had on a pair of patent red loafers from the ’60s. In this scene, Dean had a red pocket square but we also kept him in brown, an earthy tone to keep his appearance accessible. Another thing no one saw, but he was also wearing loafers, which we painted with little red pennies. Red was a very important color in the film because it is symbolic of secret societies. Missy was always dressed in warm, inviting tones like Dean, but she wore a small red ring that was intentionally hard to spot."

The costume designer utilized Americana to help tell the story. 

"The first time we see Rose she’s in a denim dress and that was very purposeful — denim represents the All-American girl. In fact, we really wanted Rose and Chris to look like the All-American couple and in some scenes, they’re in a red, white and blue color scheme. I tried to only use clothes made in the U.S. as well, dressing Chris in Levi’s and Red Wing boots and Allison in Free People and Keds."

Walter and Georgina were meant to be dressed inappropriately for their actual ages. 

"Yes, these characters were definitely aged as far as wardrobe. Georgina, especially in her nightgown, was a nod to the way that my grandmother used to dress. Walter, the groundskeeper, was dressed in a palette of green and brown to sort of blend in with the grass and trees. I also wanted to reference the story that Dean tells Chris as he’s walking him through the house and they come upon a photo of Dean’s father after he’d run in the 1936 Olympics. He was beaten by the Black runner Jesse Owens and never got over it. I actually found a pair of running shoes from that same year and put them on Walter."

View the interview in its entirety here

Written by Lainey Sidell

(Photo: Justin Lubin/Universal Studios)


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