We take a closer look at the costume for Helen of Troy, played by Daisy Badger, in Troilus and Cressida.

The costumes for Troilus and Cressida were designed by Niki Turner and made by our skilled costumiers in our Costume Workshop in Stratford-upon-Avon.

The first part of the process involved Niki giving the Costume Team a drawing out how she wanted Helen to look, which they then use to realise her design. The Designer works closely with the Costume Supervisor and the Costume Team throughout the time the costumes are being created. 

The costume design for Helen and actor Daisy Badger wearing the final costume backstage.
Design by Niki Turner © The artist Browse and license our images

The Costume Supervisor works with the designer to find fabrics that could as closely as possible replicate the silvery effect in the design.

They decided the best way to achieve this effect was using three layers of fabric. The first was a lining of stretch fabric, dyed to match actor Daisy’s skin tone. They placed a layer of sparkle fabric over the top of the stretch fabric lining, and then finished this with a final layer of heavy lace. The stretch fabric, the sparkle and the lace together create the shimmering effect that Niki was looking for.

A Costumier adjusting a silver dress on a tailor's dummy
The costume under construction with the the skin-coloured lining fabric visible on the dummy.
Photo by Danny Evans © RSC Browse and license our images

The costume was made by our skilled costumiers in Ladies Costume. Sewing the lace pieces on to the costume was done by hand, and took about four and a half days.

As well as showing attention to detail to make sure the costume looks how it should,  the team have to make sure the delicate-looking fabrics are durable enough to withstand hundreds of hours on stage and the full range of movement that Daisy needs to make throughout the show. 


Daisy as Helen being lowered down to the stage in a metal sphere dressed in a silver dress
Daisy Badger as Helen in Troilus and Cressida
Photo by Helen Maybanks © RSC Browse and license our images