Now that season 2 of Killing Eve is upon us—BBC America aired the season premiere on Sunday night—it’s as good a time as any to recognize that its creator, Phoebe Waller-Bridge, isn’t the only Phoebe who’s been instrumental to the show’s runaway success. Indeed, if anyone else could be called the show’s behind-the-scenes maestro, it just might be Phoebe de Gaye, its costume designer—and not just because of its reputation as the most fashionable show on television.
Rather than a distraction, or a product of women in the lead roles—at the show’s center is the unlikely obsession between the titular Eve Polastri, an MI5 agent played by Sandra Oh, and her would-be killer, Villanelle, an ultra-glamorous, probably psychopathic assassin played by Jodie Comer—style is simply fundamental to Eve and Villanelle’s chemistry. Just like us, Eve can’t help but marvel at Villanelle’s wardrobe of custom-dyed Burberry, brocade Dries Van Noten, satin Miu Miu, and leather J. W. Anderson, even after it becomes clear that they’re essentially rewards for and souvenirs of each of her kills. The difference being, of course, that Eve could soon become one of them. (Even if Villanelle—and her move to replace the contents of Eve’s suitcase with designer pieces like a Roland Mouret cocktail dress in exactly her size—has her experiencing the Stendhal syndrome.)
After the pastel pink confection of a Molly Goddard dress that Villanelle wore during an otherwise unnotable scene turned it into a standout fashion moment, it was only a matter of time before Villanelle was recognized for what she really is: an assassin, yes, but also a street style star in the making. But that moment, a tease of which appears in the trailer for season 2, is not upon us just yet. Which brings us to our very first spoiler alert: Villanelle is not only alive (duh), but also in the midst of a potentially monumental sartorial slump.
After putting some distance between herself and her couture-filled Parisian apartment—where, to both of their surprise, Eve stabbed her in the gut—Villanelle sets about attempting to clean her wound. Realizing that a bottle of liquor belonging to a sleeping homeless man probably wasn’t going to cut it in terms of dressing the wound, she then literally steals the coat off his back, thoroughly soaking it with blood before switching it out, just in time, for a disposable hospital gown.
Since Villanelle doesn’t exactly do pity, she deals with her uncomfortably close proximity to another invalid—a boy recovering from a car crash that killed his entire family—by turning him into her pawn. But once he’s completed her mission of stealing her a nurse uniform that will help her pillage the hospital in relative peace, she encounters another hurdle: the fact that she can’t exactly wander the wards without attracting notice in bare feet.
If Villanelle had found herself in this predicament two years ago, when Christopher Kane was making waves with the crystal-bedazzled—and occasionally fur-lined—Crocs he sent out on the runways for spring and fall 2017, this wouldn’t have been a predicament at all. No doubt aware that the ugly shoe trend hit its peak nearly two years ago, though, Villanelle gazes upon the solution to her problem—a pair of orthopedic shoes that resemble low-rent, backless Crocs—with palpable disgust.
Alas, they’re her only option, so put them on she must. (Even if the thought of doing so literally makes her toes curl.) A silent, wince-filled queenly tantrum later, the deed is done, allowing Villanelle to acquire yet another eccentric accessory: a leather briefcase, which, after a visit to the pill supply closet, Villanelle turns into an on-the-go pharmacy of sorts.
Either of those pieces on their own would have looked quite chic on Villanelle, though maybe not together. How to complete the look, though? Well, with a set of the boy’s pajamas, naturally. Though the fit is a bit tight (the shirt buttons look like they’re about to burst) the comic book-inspired print, (“BLAM,” “POW!”) nonetheless pack a punch.
Eve, meanwhile, is sticking to her signature accessory: a look of complete and utter distress, whether motionless in the bath or in the kitchen where she first came face-to-face with Villanelle. Such an encounter has yet to take place this season, but it’s only a matter of time; if there’s one thing that can be said about Villanelle’s final ensemble, it’s that she sure blended in with the kids she secretly hopped in the backseat with to hitch a ride to London, heading Eve-bound.
Breaking Down the 15 Biggest Spring 2019 Fashion Trends
(L-R) Sacai, Chloé, Altuzarra, Loewe, Paco Rabanne.
One of the overarching themes of the Spring 2019 collections is the idea of escapism. Traveling, exploration, and discovery all informed designers’ more bohemian approach to spring dressing. Mixing prints played into this idea, as well as touches of “found items,” whether it be seashells, macramé belts, or layered jewelry. One of the standout collections of this spring season, Paco Rabanne, led this trend with fellow Parisian label Chloé.
(L-R) Michael Kors, Carolina Herrera, Altuzarra, Chloé, Etro
Much of Spring 2019 fashion exudes a haute bohemian hippie feeling that we have not seen on the runway in some time. For example, look to an orange twinset from Wes Gordon’s debut collection at Carolina Herrera, Altuzarra’s laid-back crochet dressing, or Chloé’s sophisticated Balearic take on the trend.
(L-R) Prada, Louis Vuitton, CALVINKLEIN 205W39NYC, Paco Rabanne, Stella McCartney
Another inescapable trend playing into the idea of escape was tie-dye. While the Chloé and Paco Rabanne girl is clearly vacationing in Ibiza, many designers have tapped into the California girl, including Prada and CALVIN KLEIN 205W39NYC. A more ‘70s hippie take on the trend was seen at Stella McCartney, where models wore pastel tie-dye tops with matching lace tap pants.
(L-R) Louis Vuitton, Fendi, Chloé, Hermès, Prada
Shorts are the new skirt. At Fendi, bike shorts were the short du jour, and many street-style stars were already jumping on the trend. At Prada and a number of other labels, shorts were tailored and seemed to make a good excuse to swap out pants with any suiting look.
(L-R) Hermès, Chanel, CALVIN KLEIN 205W39NYC, Etro, Marine Serre
Sporty surf looks were prevalent throughout the season. Perhaps the most major runway moment was at up-and-coming designer Marine Serre’s show, where she created couturelike looks out of neoprene commonly used for wetsuits. Also picking up on this surf trend was CALVIN KLEIN 205W39NYC, with a scuba-inspired ensemble, and Etro, where the model even toted around a printed surfboard. The surf look was even given a luxe makeover by Hermès, where a neoprene swimsuit was layered under a chic leather skirt.
(L-R) Marine Serre, Dries Van Noten, Burberry, Loewe, Stella McCartney
Perhaps not the newest idea for Spring 2019, but a trend nonetheless. This season, at just about every major show, there was a suit in a neutral that almost acted as a palate cleanser. Unlike seasons of yore, which focused on masculine silhouettes, this season’s suits are decidedly more feminine in their tailoring.
(L-R) Valentino, Givenchy, Dior, Fendi, Max Mara
Much like suiting, the trench is not going anywhere anytime soon. The closet staple got an update for spring especially at Burberry, where newly installed creative director Riccardo Tisci presented many variations on the classic coat. A favorite (and a much-Instagrammed version!) was a beige trench coated in pearls and feathers. At Max Mara, Givenchy, and Valentino, the classic coat also made an appearance.
(L-R) Marc Jacobs, Dries Van Noten, Valentino, Oscar de la Renta, Rochas
Feathers were a huge moment again for Spring 2019. While the trend appeared in a more refined way at Dries Van Noten, on the other end of the spectrum, Marc Jacobs offered up two over-the-top feather dresses that sent many hearts aflutter. At Valentino, feathers were on hats, shoes, and tops.
(L-R) Michael Kors, Dries Van Noten, Carolina Herrera, Gucci, Miu Miu
While floral prints have become a spring-season mainstay, this time around, there is a prevalence of vintage-inspired blossoms and bold, colorful fabrics. Carolina Herrera and Michael Kors set the tone in New York with options in yellows and greens, and the trend continued straight through the last day in Paris at Miu Miu.
(L-R) Proenza Schouler, Chanel, Balenciaga, Christian Dior, Stella McCartney
The ‘80s have been back for quite a few seasons now, but there seems to be no stopping this trend. In past seasons, designers have referenced the decade’s big shoulders and glam hues. This season, many designers brought in acid-washed denim. The trend kicked off in New York, with Proenza Schouler sending out a bevy of almost whitewashed denim dresses, trousers, and jackets, and culminated in Paris, where Chanel, Dior, and Stella McCartney jumped on board.
(L-R) JW Anderson, Burberry, Ashley Williams, Gucci, Richard Quinn
Designers went big on all things animalia. For fall, we saw heavy coats and structured jackets in leopard spots and zebra stripes, but for spring, it is all in the unique animal-print details. We loved JW Anderson’s puff leopard-print sleeves and Richard Quinn’s excessive over-the-top take on spots, while Burberry’s mix of zebra on the top and spots on the bottom felt fun and fresh.
(L-R) Marni, Louis Vuitton, Balenciaga, Chanel, Vaquera
Fashion designers have often referenced art and artists through the years, and for Spring 2019, designers tapped into everything from futurism to Memphis design. At Marni, images were collaged and printed on draped dresses and coats. Most notably, at Louis Vuitton, Nicolas Ghesquière channeled early ’90s geometric Memphis pattern on a number of his Spring runway looks.
(L-R) Valentino, Marc Jacobs, Gucci, Stella McCartney, Versace
Rich colors appeared at Gucci, Versace, Valentino, and Marc Jacobs, with orange, green, and reds popping up in numerous runway collections. One can imagine many young starlets opting for beautiful dresses in poppy hues once red-carpet season kicks off later this year.
(L-R) Celine, Louis Vuitton, Rodarte, Givenchy, Alexander McQueen
The metallic was hard to ignore and played to the more glamorous moments seen in a number of collections. Hollywood-inspired iterations of silver came down the runway at Givenchy and Alexander McQueen, and it is only a matter of time before we see those gowns on the red carpet. At Louis Vuitton, we saw a more modern take on the metallic, a cool girls’ version of a cocktail dress, complete with strong shoulders and bare legs.
(L-R) Giorgio Armani, Calvin Klein, Balmain, Comme des Garçons, Jacquemus
Tapping into the ’80s feeling, fringe was prevalent throughout the Spring 2019 collections. In Milan, Giorgio Armani’s fringe jumpsuit came in ocean colors, and at Balmain, silver fringed party dresses ruled the runway. At Jacquemus, the navy beaded fringe dress felt right for a glamorous party in the south of France.