The Hidden Meanings Behind the Costumes on “House of the Dragon”

The Hidden Meanings Behind the Costumes on “House of the Dragon”

Ever since the announcement of the “Game of Thrones” prequel, “House of the Dragon,” the highly praised HBO series, has taken the internet by storm, bringing in close to 20 million viewers after the first installment aired on Aug. 21. As if the plot isn’t captivating enough, the popular show takes fashion enthusiasts on a nostalgic journey with its distinct costumes, where each house has their own unique style, similar to “Game of Thrones.”

While “House of the Dragon” has undeniable ties to its predecessor, the new series has developed its own visual identity that leaves viewers at the edge of their seats, and fans have award-winning French costume designer Jany Temime to thank for that. With an impressive career spanning from being fashion editor at Elle Magazine to working on the wardrobe for the iconic Harry Potter film series, it’s no surprise that Temime elevated the costumes worn by the main players in the Targaryen family: King Viserys I (Paddy Considine), Prince Daemon (Matt Smith), Princess Rhaenyra (Emma D’Arcy and Milly Alcock), Princess Rhaenys (Eve Best), and Alicent Hightower (Emily Carey), as well as the Cole family with Ser Criston Cole (Fabien Frankel) and the Velaryon family.

“To be honest, I’d never seen ‘Game of Thrones,'” Temime told Tatler Magazine. “I got the offer during quarantine, and I thought ‘House of the Dragon’ was interesting because it was a prequel. Working on a prequel is like starting a new project, because it’s not directly related to the original.” Initially unfamiliar with the original series, Temime still managed to successfully incorporate concepts like color theory to create one-of-a-kind costumes for “House of the Dragon.”

The producers came up with the meaning behind the costumes, giving the colors special significance. Each hue represents the colors of each side of the family as well as their political ties; red, black, and gold symbolize blood, death, sex, and fire, for example. “Having such a strong color story . . . affected the [silhouettes] — simple and graphic shapes helped to accentuate the colors further — and [forced us] to consider how these colors would appear on screen,” Temime shared. Inspired by the Renaissance era and Byzantine empire, one standout ensemble is the young Princess Rhaenyra’s coronation gown, which symbolizes the pride she has in her family (as well as their rich heritage), as those were the colors worn by her father during his big tournament.

Whether you’re a “House of the Dragon” fanatic or just simply intrigued by the show’s wardrobe, keep scrolling to take in the captivating costumes from the houses featured.