‘Bachelorette’ Costume Designer Anna Bingemann on Strip Clubs, Wedding Dresses, and Joan Didion

Bachelorette Kirsten Dunst Lizzy Caplan Isla Fisher Rebel Wilson

Photo courtesy of RADiUS-TWC

Becky (Rebel Wilson) and her maid of honor, Regan

How did you get involved with Bachelorette?
I've crossed over a bit here and there. I really enjoy doing movies. Way back, I started with Vanilla Sky with Tom Cruise and did stuff for Nicole [Kidman], and I do a lot of her movies. I just tend to do their (her celebrity clients') costumes…I'll just do theirs and then a costume designer comes in and finishes it. With this one, I knew Isla, and it was the perfect one for me to come in and do because it's contemporary. But then I go back to the red carpet for a bit. It's a great variation, I have to say.

Each character is so fully fleshed-out and differentiated. Kirsten's Regan is quite classic, Lizzy's Gena is less than put-together, and Isla's Katie is just out for a good time...How did you prepare each wardrobe?
The audience [has] to be fine with looking at the same outfit pretty much the whole way through. It's not just a quick costume change. 'What's her personality? How would they dress?' Lizzy was the cool kind of girl numbing herself with the drugs and the alcohol, and she was a bit more of a street urchin type of character. They all had a color, that didn't clash but worked well together. You have to make sure each one stands out but no one more than the other. so once Lizzy's got a blue, we want to do a lighter color [for Kirsten and Isla]. Isla was in the green which worked very well with the blue, and because it was lace it had a bit more texture to it and it didn't clash with the blue. Lizzy's had to be a particular blue because it's shot so much at night and in Scores and things like that…

You also had to dress a few strippers.
I did go to Scores with the director [Leslye Headland] because we were shooting in there at like 9 at night…to see what the girls were wearing, which was also one of the funniest things you've ever done. I don't generally spend time in Scores, so that was funny.

The entire movie centers on the wedding dress; how did you pick that?
We had such an amazing day [at David's Bridal]. Rebel is a most wonderful person, funny, funny, funny, she's just fantastic. She's Australian, and I'm originally Australian, so there's an immediate connection there. With that dress we had to make sure it could be done up in the back, so that when the two of them [Kirsten, Isla] climb into there there was a huge amount of room so it had to be done up the back and not by a corseted lace.

The driving plot is the girls running around New York City, frantically trying to repair the dress the night before the wedding. Surely you've had your own last-minute stressful moments as a stylist.
I've had a dress with somebody at someone at Cannes Film Festival, and I'm in New York, and they ring me and go "What do I do? The zipper's broken! And I have to walk out in ten minutes!" You have a back-up dress; that's how you do it. The only time there would be a problem is when something spills on it. You always have a backup. Funny enough, it generally doesn't happen, but you can have a dress and put it on and go "I don't love it as much as this one here," and then you can change your mind.

Have you had any of your own crazy misadventures at a bachelorette party like these ladies have?
I think you haven't lived if you hadn't had that sort of situation happen. You'd be robbing yourself of a little part of life if you didn't have that.