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Recreating The Look: Downton Abbey

1 May 2013
Downton Abbey

Recreate the Downton Abbey look with hair, make-up and fashion tips from BAFTA's official style partners.

Downton AbbeyDownton Abbey is a British period drama television series written by Julian Fellowes depicting the lives of the aristocratic Crawley family and their servants in the post-Edwardian era. Starting in 1912, the programme follows their lives right up until the 1920s over the course of four series.

Over the course of the programme's history, Downton has won two BAFTAs with an additional ten nominations. Most recently the show was nominated for Production Design at the Television Craft Awards in 2013.

Costume Designing for Downton by Susannah Buxton

Susannah Buxton received a BAFTA nomination for her work designing the costumes for the first two series of Downton Abbey. As part of her research she delved into archives of photographic evidence from the period.

She explains; "I used photographic archives, costume history books, paintings, museum collections, and inevitably certain faces, particularly in the second series. Coco Chanel was one of the people I used." According to Buxton, one of the greatest challenges of designing for Downton is sourcing the right fabric for the upper-class look; "the difficulty is finding the weight of fabric that they would have used in those days, and the lusciousness and embroidery and beadings."

Recreate the Look

Here we recreate the look of the demure Crawley sisters, on model Vicky. Styling took place at London's Corinthia hotel where BAFTA's official style partners were on hand to give Vicky the full Downton makeover.

Make-UpDownton Abbey Make-Up

Official BAFTA partner MAC took charge of the make-up, recreating the flawless and natural look of the Crawley sisters.

TO prime the face a no-grease, super-hydrating moisturiser was applied, followed by MAC's Mineralise Moisture Foundation to diminish imperfections and fine lines. Eyes were widened with a Zoom Lash mascara a rich luxe lipstick finished off the look.

  • Studio Moisture Fix - £21.50
  • Mineralise Moisture Foundation - £26.00
  • Mineralise Moisture Foundation - £26.00
  • Zoom Lash Mascara - £14.00
  • Rich Lipstick in Luxe Naturale - £20.00

Downton Abbey - Make UpBAFTA/ Steve Butler

Downton Abbey - HairBAFTA/ Steve Butler


Vicky's hair was shaped with Mark Hill's magic wand, heated styling tong which is versatile enough to create large volume lasting waves. Once curled, the hair was pinned up at the back and sprayed with a firm hold hairspray to keep it in place.

Mark Hill

Skin Finish

Jules Heptonstall from St Tropez explains how to achieve the peferct skin finish for this look:

"First, we prepped the skin on hands, elbows, knees and feet using St. Tropez Tan Optimiser Body Moisturiser. This is so no tan clings to these areas and ensures all the tell tale signs have been covered. We then lightly sprayed the St. Tropez Self Tan Spray over the body and face to lift complexion and even out the skin tone. Applying a light coat of tan gives the skin warmth, rather than a depth in colour. If you can’t have a spray tan, using one coat of St. Tropez Bronzing Mousse will have the same effect.

St Tropez Logo"After the tan had developed and the guide colour rinsed off, we then applied lashings of St. Tropez Rose Illuminator to the arms, shoulders and décolletage to give an added iridescence."

Biba Gold Sequin Tippet


Styling was looked after by House of Fraser, official menswear and womenswear partner to the BAFTA Television Awards.

To create the Downton look they used a selection of pieces from various fashion lines available in the store.

Downton Jewellery


To give the outfit that much needed sparkle, CARAT

  • ; official jewellery partner to the Television Awards, added some stunning accessories to the look.

The yellow pear drop earrings (£474) are matched perfectly with a bold yellow gold garden ring (£867).

Finally, a combination of three bracelets complete the look; round microset bracelet (£521), art deco bracelet (£528) and a champagne borderset bracelet (£782).

Downton Abbey - Styling

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