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How Emma Watson’s Beauty and the Beast has a Gujarati connection

One of the elaborate costumes worn by Emma Watson in Disney’s Beauty and the Beast was crafted by Gujarati artisans, a designer has revealed.

hollywood Updated: Mar 22, 2017 15:25 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Emma Watson,Beauty and the Beast,Beauty and the Beast Costumes
The costume with the intricate ‘aari’ work worn by Emma Watson in Beauty and the Beast.

As Emma Watson’s Beauty and the Beast continues to dominate the global box office, a costume designer for the film has revealed that one of Belle’s elaborate costumes was designed by two Gujarati artisans.

In an Instagram post shared on Sunday, assistant costume designer Sinead O’Sullivan pictures of the Indian brothers Kasam and Juma holding up a piece of fabric with intricate ‘aari’ work on display. O’Sullivan goes on to explain that ‘aari’ work “is a very fine chain stitch traditional to the Kutch area of Gujarat. This style lent itself very nicely to this eighteenth century French floral design.”

Beauty and the Beast is a live-action remake of Disney’s classic 1991 animated film. In addition to praising its grand sets and visuals, the film’s costumes, designed by the Oscar-winning Jacqueline Durran, have also been praised.

@beautyandthebeast is out today! I was an assistant designer to Jacqueline Durran on the job, which had a costume team of almost 100 people. As a team, we tried to source ethical, fair-trade and sustainable fabrics wherever possible. For Belle's "red cape look" in particular we decided to challenge ourselves to see how difficult it would be to create a costume that was head to toe fair-trade, organic and sustainable, but which didn’t compromise Jacqueline's design. We contacted Eco Age, who provided us with a set of criteria which we could adhere to. All of the production was done in our in-house workshops, and the whole costume team got involved in the challenge. This specific costume required 12 different fabrics to make her cape, jacket, blouse, bodice, skirts and bloomers, with trims and ties, and we ensured that each element was certified organic and fair-trade. Our dyeing team took on the challenge of using natural and low impact dyes, and printing with traditional wood blocks, which the set carpenters helped make in the construction department, from redundant bits of the set. Some of the fabrics and trims used were vintage, including the cape which was made from hand-woven Scottish Jacob’s wool, that was then over-dyed using madder. The fabric for the jacket was made using a hand-woven linen found on E-bay, which was actually a lady in manchester’s school project from the 1960’s. The rest of the fabrics were sourced from fairtrade co-operatives in India and Nepal. #whomademyclothes #whomademycostume #ethicalcostume #ootd #jacquelinedurran #fairtrade #behindthescenes #beautyandthebeast #artisan #organic #naturaldyes #vintage #disney #sustainable @beautyandthebeast

A post shared by Sinéad O'Sullivan (@thecostumedirectory) on

O’Sullivan “was an assistant designer to Jacqueline Durran on the job, which had a costume team of almost 100 people.”

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First Published: Mar 22, 2017 15:22 IST