Why Costume Design For Teen TV Shows ‘Work Twice as Hard’ For Emmy Recognition

Dian S. Hicks

It may have more to do with who’s watching the shows, as opposed to what the characters are wearing.

Sex and the City,” “Big Little Lies,” “Russian Doll” and “The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story.” “Gossip Girl,” “PEN15,” “grown-ish” and “Chilling Adventures of Sabrina.” What these shows all have in common? Talented casts, creative scripts and notable costume design. What they don’t? The former list all won Emmy Awards for their often fashion-focused (and sometimes period-influenced) costumes. But the similarly acclaimed high school or college (or Academy of Unseen Arts) based series have never even received a nomination.

“I think some of my better work actually has been on ‘grown-ish,'” says costume designer Michelle Cole. In 2018 and 2019, she received two — of her six — Emmy nominations

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