The Hidden Meanings Behind the Vibrant Fashion on Netflix Hit Series, ‘Ratched’
It’s no argument that the fashion in the Netflix hit series, Ratched, noticeably oozes chic vintage. Everything from Mildred’s (Sarah Paulson) waist-cinching pieces to the flamboyant Ms. Petunia (Chiquita), viewers can’t help but take notice of the fabulous classic styles the characters stun with in each scene. The series, based on the imagination of Ken Kesey’s novel, One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest, surrounds nurse Mildred Ratched and her adventures.
Directed by Ryan Murphy, the satisfyingly colorful aesthetic, set in the 1940s, of Ratched will have you contemplating switching up your wardrobe. The two geniuses responsible for the eye-catching styles, wardrobe stylists Lou Eyrich and Rebecca Guzzi, deliver vintage chic on many levels.
According to Fashionista, Guzzi explained that the symbolic surgical green worn by most of their characters is utilized for multiple meanings. To begin with, Ryan Murphy envisioned the color in various shades that would reflect violence, lust, envy, greed, oppression, and evil, all evident themes of the show. Eyrich and Guzzi work their magic by serving a variety of sensational looks in each category while implementing trends from the fashion era.
Overall, color is an integral part of film, helping to propel the story forward. When viewers notice certain colors in film, rest assured that what is seen is no accident. Filmmakers carefully make color decisions that affect viewers’ experience of watching, even if it occurs subconsciously.
This explains Murphy’s vision, which had a strong intention to exclude reds at a certain point, with the exception of blood at the hospital or Mildred’s lips, to build suspense throughout the scenes. The well-planned color palette of fun hues of blue and green variations with a mix of monochromatic styles is meant to maintain anticipation throughout the unpredictable storyline.
Murphy requested classic silhouettes such as Dior’s New Look which is the Bar suit haute couture from Christian Dior’s Spring/Summer 1947 collection. Mildred is first introduced in an elegant Canary yellow skirt suit that included rounded shoulders, a cinched waist, and a coordinated stylish hat paired with a gleaming string of pearls that daintily rested around the villainess’ neck.
In addition, many of the iconic 1940s styles demonstrated throughout the series consisted of bold-shoulder dresses, waist-accentuating silhouettes, and statement outerwear. These looks were also often donned by Hollywood-style icons from the same targeted era such as Dorothy Dandridge and Marilyn Monroe. Today, a handful of those classic styles are still mimicked such as strapless, off-the-shoulder tops, dresses, and fur coats.
For more updates on the show, visit their official Instagram and make sure to keep an eye on the fashion choices of Ratched in season two.