- Among the many incredible costumes on “Game of Thrones” are the cloaks worn by the Brothers of the Night’s Watch.
- The cloaks look rugged on the Watchmen, but they’re actually made from IKEA rugs, according to the series’ costume designer Michele Clapton.
- INSIDER producer Aj Caldwell tried his hand at turning a budget IKEA rug into a Jon Snow-inspired cloak by following a step-by-step process of dying, cutting, and distressing the rug. Watch to see how the transformation goes.
The following is a transcript of the video:
Aj: Bring me my cloak! Oh, gosh, here we go. This looks ridiculous. Oh, my gosh.
Aj: So “Game of Thrones” is known for their excellent costume design, and I recently found out that the Night’s Watch cloaks are actually made out of IKEA rugs. So I figured I’d buy one and try and make my own Night Watch cloak and see how well I can do it. Obviously “Game of Thrones” has a large budget for their costumes. I, on the other hand, do not. So I went to IKEA, and I just got a cheaper version of the rug that they use.
Aj: So behind the scenes, they have a whole team of people that distress the rugs by beating them and shaving them to really make them look lived-in. So what I’m gonna do today is first cut a hole so I can fit it over me, then I’m gonna distress the rug the best I can with scissors and sanding and some other things. Then I’m gonna add a couple accessories to really sell the look, and I have these trusty directions to guide me all the way through.
Aj: So this is my rug. It was originally white, but I pre-dyed it with some fabric dye because this room does not have ventilation. And now it is time to cut the rug. All right, here we go. You really gotta be careful with scissors. Yeah, I’m real close. Look at that. There it is. I cut a hole. Oh ho. Oh man. I’m getting real close to Jon Snow.
Aj: So my next step is to distress the rug and make it look really rugged, uneven, and lived-in. Just real haphazard, you know, no method to this at all. This is my DIY eye. Hey “GoT,” if you need another costume designer… I’m available.
Aj: I’m gonna cut some things, mostly because I like scissors and cutting. Happy scissors. You ever cut your rug at home as a kid? Like you’re bored, and you had scissors, and you have a rug, and you take the scissors, and you cut the rug, but just like a little bit, not enough for anyone to notice. I did that.
Aj: All the fur that we cut off. So now we’re just gonna sandpaper a couple areas. It kind of fades the colour in certain spots. Arms are getting kind of tired. All right. Cloak post-sanding. Beautiful.
Aj: I set the cloak aside, and now I’m going to prep the fabric by cutting a neckline into it. So I’ve got this fabric folded in half. I’m just gonna cut basically a quarter out of this, and that should make like a V shape for a neckline, so here we go. I honestly have no idea if I’m cutting this too small or too large, but we will find out soon enough. So this piece of fabric is a little bit too wide. It’s folded in half, which means I’m just gonna cut the side of it at a slight angle, just to make it a little thinner to fit me better. Fabric has been reduced. So this is what the fabric looks like once open. This will kind of go around me like that but backwards. I can dance like silhouetted under here. Cool.
Aj: So I’ve got some white fabric paint that I’m going to put on this toothbrush and then flick onto my lovely cloak to give it a nice snowy effect.
Aj: Now it is time to attach the leather straps to the fabric. The straps are essentially gonna go over me like this in an X fashion to hold the cloak over my body. Let’s do it. I’ve never riveted anything. The trick is knowing what you’re doing. Here we go. That didn’t do anything at all.
Aj: So long story short, it did not go as planned. There was tape, there was glue, there was another kind of glue, there was a needle, there were tears, and to make the safety pins blend in, you can use some spray paint, but again, I’m in a studio with no ventilation, so skipping this step today.
Aj: So now we are at the end of our journey. And it has been a journey. The fabric has been attached, and it is time to try it on and see how it looks.
Aj: And now it is time for the moment of truth. Bring me my cloak! Oh, gosh, here we go. Uh. Uh. Uhhh. Maybe if we did this. Basically the leather straps are just, they’re just too long. They just, Jon Snow does not look like this. No one on “Game of Thrones” looks like this. So uh, I mean, props to the costume designers. And if I was like, you know, at the bar getting a drink, you know, and, you know, you see this guy in this beautiful cloak from here, you’re just like, “That guy is probably attractive.” And then I turn around, you’re just like, “I was wrong” because this looks ridiculous. Oh, my gosh.
Aj: You know nothing, Jon Snow. But seriously, like, we know nothing.
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