For Capitol Couture: Book-designed “Mockingjay Dress”

Designed/made by: starsofcassiopeia

Build Specs:

- Top is bridal satin, lined, and fully supported with boning. Straps were added just for extra support, but the dress is solid enough to be worn strapless (and straps can be removed).

- 4 lbs of feathers, attached one by one

- Flame ruffle is ~3 sq yd of organza cut into strips and ruffled by hand.

- In the dark, the ruffle glows orange/red, as if it’s actually on fire!

- Bow is my actual recurve bow. Yes, I know how to use it.

Johanna Mason: Branching Out

The young District 7 victor takes glamour to new heights.

Johanna Mason may hail from the lumber district, but this slip of a victor is anything but green.  Don’t be swayed by her cinnamon sprinkle of freckles and delicate, doll-like features. She was one of the youngest tributes ever reaped in Hunger Games history and her agility with an axe resonates throughout Panem. Sly. Savage. Sangfroid. These are just a few of the adjectives tossed around to describe Mason, who’s known for disarming her victims by feigning weakness.

Mason arrives at her photo shoot for Capitol Couture looking anything but meek. She has a reputation for being snide with her prep team.  District 7’s stylist has been dressing tributes like oak trees and firs for the opening ceremonies ever since the first Hunger Games. Clearly, Mason prefers a more conceptual take on lumber and paper.  “My stylist’s the biggest idiot in the Capitol. Wish I’d gotten Cinna,” she has been known to mumble.

During make up, Mason doesn’t fidget as her artist adheres three-inch eyelashes to her lower lashline that only intensify her disarming gaze. (It’s telling that she doesn’t flinch once, even when dots of hot glue are applied.) A palette of golden metallic eyeshadow brings out the greenish brown of her up-slanted eyes and extended wings of copper cream shadow add depth.  For her lips, a trace of nude liner is filed with a matte soft sienna lipstick and then overlaid with bronze gloss.  Her lustrous chestnut locks, upswept into a coronet of curls, lend an organic majesty to the look. The effect is futuristic forest queen. It’s almost as if this petite tribute has been gilded by a nymph from her very own district.

But it’s her custom gown—a graceful collaboration by Capitol costume designer Trish Summerville and couture designer Jan Taminiau—that transforms her from gladiator to goddess. Constructed of artfully shredded and ruched chiffon and rags, the confection feels like flutters of paper in a gentle breeze.  The use of bark tissue or sculpted cork for the bodice, one sleeve and plumed collar is a nod to the natural resources of District 7.  “I love creating a fantasy around a woman’s body,” says the Dutch designer Taminiau of his creative process. The asymmetry suits Mason and allows us a glimpse of her bold bracelet of bronze nails. The gold ear cuffs by jewelry designer Eddie Borgo supply just the right amount of glint.

Mason poses for a few shots and then slips off her four-inch platform Camilla Skovgaard jagged-wedged sandals. She suddenly looks smaller, even younger—but hardly weak.  Clearly, the odds are ever in her favor and this victor doesn’t need to knock on wood. 

Written by Monica Corcoran Harel

Fashion Report, Hunty

There’s an education committee meeting this morning and Hunty, folk were throwing looks like a Heather at a booger convention. Let us get right into Senator Jane English’s age appropriate and flattering look. Senator English is an ocean of texture wearing a gabardine, waist length hem and elbow length sleeves in a palate of aqua, sky blue, robin’s egg, lime, sea foam, and magenta accents. Pale orange box cut top, black trouser and a conservative flat gold sandal. Accessories include a purple enameled daisy broach worn with matching ear rings. Representative Fredrick Love brought it to the runway hard style in fetching summer-weight seersucker, crisp white oxford button down, a spun silk tie in a shade so pale as to be the idea of a secret of a notion of baby blue and a buff brogue worn with sunflower dress socks. District 93’s Representative Dotson looked very nice in a navy suit, mahogany cap toe dress shoes, a powder blue button down and a college stripe power tie in midnight blues and blood reds. A side note, we had a social interaction and Representative Dotson couldn’t have been nicer. District 17’s Senator Key gave a very dashing look in a navy twill suit, computer tech blue oxford button down and navy tie. I did not see his shoe. District 34’s Senator Cheatham brought a civilized casual look to the meeting, working a plain white button down oxford, unbuttoned at the throat, a navy pant and cowboy boots, vintage. Again, Senator Cheatham and I had a bit of a polite business related interaction and, for real you guys, he’s such a nice person! Style Icon, District 31’s Senator Joyce Elliot gave a fashion forward look of a trench style shirt dress, belted at the waist, and knee-high chocolate sued boot. Accessories include a rough polish, turquoise bead necklace reminiscent of one Mrs. Wilma Flintstone, and matching drop earrings. The Senator asked me if I was having a nice day and I replied in the affirmative. She noticed the gold glitter on my arm (from this weekend’s burly practice) and said that she loved it. Let us now turn the appraising eye to the attendees. One particularly well preserved middle-aged woman with a flattering feathered and layered style shoulder-length brunette hair gave a flattering black and white ensemble of a tribal print knee length pencil skirt with a kick pleat, black camisole top and a white fitted denim jacket with sleeves rolled to the elbow and a safety cone orange leather bucket-style hand bag. That handbag with all the subdued black and white was everything. Another attendee gave full-frontal Barbie Doll realness in a deep pink with a large amber Rococo swirl motive, poly blend knee-length cap-sleeve, boat-neck day dress, belted at the waist by a gold chain with a small gold flue-de-lis pendant, a strappy low heel gold sandal and a white leather laptop bag, which was, like the previous safety cone orange bag, was everything. Trending today? Obviously, bags that are everything in the most Capitol Style, Hunty.      

Game Faces: District 4’s Mags

D4F: Mags

Coif: 8

Pout: 6

Poise: 4

CC Style Score: 6.5

At 80, Mags is the most mature victor competing in the upcoming Quarter Quell. Her triumph—over five decades ago—still resonates in our Hunger Games history.  And while the Capitol may idolize the natural radiance and vigor of youth, there is also a deep appreciation for a woman who ages with dignity and grace.

When it comes to hair, Mags’ stylist scores points for showcasing her long, silver tresses. They well reflect the undulating ripples of the ocean waves of her District. (We don’t believe that a woman should ever shear her hair because of her age!) Obviously, her prep team understands the importance of a deep hair conditioner too. We like how the subtle cream blush accentuates Mags’ enviable bone structure, but a minor note: a few fake eyelashes adhered to the outer corners of her eyes would have widened her gaze. For a tutorial on how to apply lashes, go to our Capitol Couture Wink Worthy Lashes Beauty Guide.

As we know, this District 4 victor took a cue from Katniss Everdeen and volunteered for the upcoming 75th Hunger Games.  Mags must surely know that her odds as an octogenarian are not in her favor, yet her posture remains determined.  We salute her valor and loyalty.


Our day in DC is with these men Wilson Cruz & Max Emerson - catch them LIVE on Wilson’s periscope #CapitolStyle @maxisms @thejessicakill @ppmginfo


Cat Power

Fashion is a predatory passion. You hunt, you pounce, you consume. Leading the pack is easy when you channel a big cat in all its spotted, striped and sinewy glory.  Leopard print ranks high among the most stylish for obvious reasons: the lean felines can sprint 35 miles-per-hour and fell animals twice their size, a mandatory skill when shopping a sample sale in the Capitol. But don’t discount jaguar, panther, tiger or even the lynx as inspirations when you suit up.

  • DO: Play mixologist, like rebel designer Jeremy Scott does, by pairing Bengal tiger stripes with ocelot or leopard spots. Contrast is key. To pull off interspecies patterns and prints, all you need is a sense of humor and a lion cub’s share of self-esteem. For a sly wink at the food chain, I like to wear zebra print skinny jeans with a leopard print silk blouse. Designer Christopher Kane favors a snow leopard’s look in icy grey, which clashes perfectly with the desert-hues of traditional cat prints.

  • DON’T: Meek cats finish last—or get stampeded!—so do not limit yourself to one animal print accessory like a clutch or a scarf. Such subtlety will never get you noticed or VIP access either. Instead, choose at least three like-minded animal accents such as Charlotte Olympia stilettos, oversized cuffs and a pair of sunglasses.

  • DARE: Take the look to dizzying heights by festooning your coif with a leopard’s rosette motif. At Jean Paul Gaultier’s recent couture show in Paris, the puckish designer had his models go carnivore from head to toe.  Hair artist Odile Gilbert spray-painted spots on skyscraper updos and ladylike bouffants, juxtaposing whimsy with refinement.