Style Profile: “Mad Men” costume designer Janie Bryant


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Talented costume designer Katherine Jane Bryant (left) goes by ‘Janie’ and oversees the sartorial look of my favorite show, ‘Mad Men.’ She won an Emmy for her work on the dearly departed ‘Deadwood’ and ‘Mad Men’ just got nommed for 16 Emmys--the first episode received a nod for costume design by John A. Dunn. The second season debuts tomorrow night and I already have a bottle of Scotch and a pack of Pall Malls ready to go. Bryant, a Tennessee native, is mad for good manners and well-dressed crowds. Here’s the skinny on her personal style:

Amount of pressure a costume designer feels on Halloween: People always ask me, ‘What should I be for Halloween?’ My stock answer: ‘Be creative and really, really scary.’ I ask you, what happened to being scary on Halloween?


I first played dress up with: My grandmothers’ closets. My Barbies, my friends, my baby sister Anna, and my cousin were all subjects of my visions!

Cinematic style icon: The ever so glamorous and sultry Norma Shearer.

Go-to outfit: Black Valentino buckled boots with
Swarovski crystals, J Brand skinny dark blue jeans, majestic light gray henley style-shirt, 1970s vintage leather jacket with leather appliques on the pockets, a pair of vintage sweetheart bracelets, and gold hoop earrings.

Favorite on-set experience: Would have to be on the set of'Deadwood.’
It was season one and was the first time the principal actors
and 150 background actors were together all in period
costume! Definitely a moment of WOW!

Purse du jour: The Maison by Valentino in burgundy patent leather, gorgeous.

Men should never skimp on: Manners!

Women should always skimp on: Men with no manners!

Animal I most resemble: A Siamese cat.

Top three vintage stores in Los Angeles: Play Clothes (11839 Otsego St., Valley Village; [818] 752-6569), The Way We
Wore (334 S. La Brea Ave., L.A.; [323] 937-0878), and Golyester (136 S. La Brea Ave., L.A.; [323] 931-1339).

If I could makeover anyone, it would be: Middle America.

Memo to designers: Always be true to yourself.

Barneys Warehouse Sale or Fred Segal Sale: Barneys Warehouse Sale.

Worst fashion blunder: I’ll have to go with panty lines or a fanny pack.

Right now, I am collecting: Positive thoughts.

My mother always told me: ‘You can do and have anything you want, you just have to put your mind to it’ and ‘No use crying over spilled milk.’

Makeup must-have: False eyelashes.

I dig fashion because: It’s a way in which each one of us
can express ourselves. Fashion is outrageous, creative, beautiful,
opulent, minimal, whimsical, understated. Fashion is always evolving. It’s everything.

I wish my nickname was: Zsa Zsa.

Photo credits: Janie Bryant, (her collection); Barbie doll, Smithsonian; Norma Shearer, Photoplay; bracelet, Marathon jewelry; ‘Deadwood,’ HBO; Siamese cat painting, Mimi Harvey; rainbow,; Zsa Zsa bust,

*This post originally ran last November, but I re-posted now that Mad Men has new fans and 16 Emmy nominations.