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Meryl Streep's hands-on approach to Devil Wears Prada costumes

Published 01/07/2016

Meryl Streep
Meryl Streep

Costume designer Patricia Field found working with Meryl Streep on The Devil Wears Prada a breath of fresh air, as the actress was so happy to get involved.

Meryl Streep offered Patricia Field the perfect "dynamic" collaboration on the set of The Devil Wears Prada.

The iconic movie is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year (16), with costume designer Patricia recalling her time working with the cast, including Oscar-winner Meryl as magazine editor Miranda Priestly. Rather than taking inspiration from real life fashion mavens like Anna Wintour when choosing Miranda's wardrobe, Patricia made it personal and took on board many of the actress' suggestions.

"Meryl had very good ideas that I liked very much, including her white hair, because I felt the white hair was a great palette," she told "I could put anything to it. It was dynamic. That's an example of the kind of collaboration that I'm talking about. Some actors come with many ideas, some actors come with less ideas and say, 'You're the expert, dress me, I don't know anything about fashion.' Getting back to Meryl Streep, I wanted to create a fashion editor portrayed by Meryl, so it was very important that I understood her body, her ideas, and so on."

Patricia turned to the archives of Donna Karan for Meryl's outfits, especially pieces from the '80s and '90s that boasted strong silhouettes. The designer was happy for Patricia to raid through her warehouse in New Jersey, where a lot of the outfits came from, and Meryl ended up giving them a new lease of life on screen.

Fellow Academy Award-winner Anne Hathaway co-starred as journalist Andrea 'Andy' Sachs, who is intimidated by her new boss in the office. Patricia was delighted to work with the then up-and-coming actress, and help transform her alter ego.

"She starts out looking a bit grungy, non fashion-conscious," Patricia said of Andrea. "And along the storyline she develops into a little fashionista. After my meeting with her and understanding her personality, I got the idea that she's a Chanel girl. And when I spoke to Chanel - and here we go again: classic - when I spoke to Chanel they were very happy. They wanted to put their clothes on a young girl."

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