Olivia Pope's Look Is About toChange in This Stunning Method SaysScandalCostume Designer Lyn Paolo

All through Scandal’s seven seasons, we’ve seen numerous iterations of Olivia Pope. We met our heroine when she was uncorrupted, harmless of political crime, wielding a literal white hat. We’ve seen her love-struck and romantic, parading Oscar de la Renta robes throughout the White Home. We watched her evolve into the murderous, corrupt head of B613, buying and selling in her pastels for darkish hues and elbow-high gloves. And within the show’s last season, we’ll see one more model of Olivia, in line with costume designer Lyn Paolo.

“I really feel like there have been episodes the place she actually was a unique particular person in every scene,” Paolo advised InStyle. “Within the first three seasons it was actually extra about being a gladiator in a go well with and sporting a white hat, however as time advanced and her relationship along with her mom and her father turned darkish and likewise her relationship with Fitz modified, there have been so many evolutions.”

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These many delicate shifts in character, she stated, inform her design course of. “Shonda [Rhimes] paints a unique image each week, after which I’ve the enjoyable of attempting to make that be visually lovely whereas additionally telling the story,” Paolo stated. “I learn the script 5 or 6 instances and I make notes within the script about what’s taking place right here, what are we attempting to convey, how are every of the characters feeling. I can then make copious notes about what every outfit, what every costume must disclose to the viewers.”

Kerry Washington, who brings Olivia to life on the small display screen, collaborates with Paolo each step of the way in which. “I really like listening to their ideas as a result of in spite of everything, apart from Shonda, who is aware of Olivia Pope higher than Kerry, or who is aware of Fitzgerald Grant higher than Tony [Goldwyn]? Between Shonda and the actors, it’s form of symbiotic now. They’ve lived in that person’s pores and skin for thus lengthy that I’m at all times very conscious of guaranteeing that their opinions are heard.”

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Even Washington will need to have been shocked, although, on the flip that Olivia takes within the show’s last season. In response to Paolo, the crossover between Scandal and Methods to Get Away with Homicide sees a really “casual” Olivia Pope outdoors of Washington, D.C., leaving the pomp and circumstance of the White Home behind.

“She doesn’t have her personal firm anymore, and she’s outdoors the D.C. world. Particularly when she transitions into Annalise Keating’s world, you’ll positively see a unique Olivia there,” Paolo stated of the upcoming two-episode crossover.

ABC/Richard Cartwright

Does “casual” Olivia indicate a return to her morals as effectively? The costume designer hopes that we’ll see the reemergence of her white hat earlier than the present wraps for good. “I hold telling Kerry, ‘I don’t know if I like this Olivia proper now.’ And we have now a superb giggle, however yeah, I feel she’s going to. I hope she’s going to,” Paolo stated. “I don’t assume even Kerry is aware of. I don’t assume any of the actors have any clue how the present goes to finish.”

White hat or not, Olivia Pope’s equipment recreation has at all times been on-point. From Prada luggage to Manolo Blahnik pumps, the D.C. fixer is aware of methods to polish an outfit. And in line with her costume designer, you don’t want to interrupt the funds to get the look.

“It’s actually simply in regards to the silhouettes and the colour palette. You don’t must spend that type of cash. Purchase one thing that’s complementary to you. Don’t be a slave to vogue,” Paolo advised InStyle. “At all times have every little thing match to your physique. After which the accent half I feel is the enjoyable and the straightforward half. What we play with with the entire equipment is having a pop of colour, so you’ll discover Kerry will actually be in black head-to-toe after which we’ll simply pop a vivid pink bag. I feel that’s simply enjoyable, versus having your bag match every little thing. I really like the thought of getting a splash of colour right here or there.”

As for Olivia’s type (and angle) this last season, Paolo has one phrase: “fierce.” Tune in to see an all-new Olivia Pope dominate the display screen when Scandal returns to ABC on Thursday, Jan. 18 at 9 p.m. ET.

ABC/Richard Cartwright
ABC/Richard Cartwright

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