Video: How a boy who wanted to "dress up actresses" grew up and created luxurious outfits for the TV series "Dynasty"
2023 Author: Richard Flannagan | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-05-24 13:10
The series "Dynasty" once riveted the eyes of many viewers around the world to the screens. And one of the reasons for his frenzied popularity was the luxurious outfits and jewelry in which the heroines shone on the set. They were created by a man named Nolan Miller, who from the age of ten dreamed of a career as a designer and "never wanted anything else."
He was born in Texas in 1933 to a large family. Since childhood, he was possessed by two passions - and both fiery: cinema and fashion. In the fifth or sixth grade, he clearly decided that he wanted to "dress up actresses", and did not dream of anything else. He ran away from school to spend half a day at the cinema, and it was not the intricacies of the plot that fascinated him, but the outfits of movie stars. After graduating from high school, Miller worked for some time in an oil field in Louisiana - a dubious occupation for a man whose thoughts are devoted only to sparkling diamonds and kilometers of rustling atlas.
Nolan Miller stopped at nothing on the way to his dream. He received a good art education and was already planning to offer his services to some film studio as a costume designer, but another crisis occurred in the industry. Design departments were closed, costume designers were rapidly losing their jobs. Miller found a job as a decorator in a flower shop in Los Angeles and was already ready to accept the collapse of all his hopes, but then …
However, what happened "but here" is not known for certain. There are two main assumptions - and in both cases, it seems, was not without the fairy godmother or the patronage of Fortune. Some biographers of Miller believe that the young decorator was invited to decorate the New Year's celebration at the very screen queen Joan Crawford. Hanging the garlands, the charming Nolan got into a conversation with the star and, as if by chance, showed her his drawings (which, apparently, he specially took with him). She was delighted, ordered several dresses for Miller, recommended him to friends … and away we go.
According to another version, Joan Crawford was replaced by legendary producer Aaron Spelling, who idly walked into an inconspicuous flower shop. Other circumstances are exactly the same: lively conversation, sketches from under the floor, a lucrative offer … Be that as it may, Crawford and Spelling became Miller's constant partners: she is a muse and inspiration, he is a regular customer. It was Spelling who was involved in the series "Dynasty", which eventually became associated with almost all of Miller's career. In 1957, Nolan Miller opened his own luxury studio and began creating costumes and jewelry for movie stars. His regular clients were Joan Crawford (of course), Elizabeth Taylor, Linda Evans and others.
Meanwhile, Aaron Spelling comes to the conclusion that the audience of films and TV series longs to contemplate not only other people's sufferings and joys, but also someone else's … beautiful life. Luxury is what will attract millions of audiences! So Miller starts working in the film industry. Soon it began to be ironically called "Spelling's secret weapon". Another plot could be obscenely simple - intrigue, love, betrayal … However, the splendor of the costumes of the main and secondary heroines did not allow the audience to take their eyes off the flickering screen.
Miller designed costumes for many films, but the series "Dynasty" became the pinnacle of his work. Spelling had already earned a reputation by that time thanks to his work on the TV series Starsky and Hutch, The Boat of Love, Fantasy Island, and Charlie's Angels, and he conceived a new ambitious project that would have thrown off the podium the cult family saga Dallas ".
It is believed that "Dynasty" significantly influenced the formation of the recognizable style of the 80s. Miller came off to the fullest - experimental cut, aggressive, extravagant shapes, shoulder pads, tucks, deep cleavage … Miller's ateliers and he himself worked just for wear, releasing several dozen new models every week. In each episode, the heroines appeared in different outfits - Spelling did not want to see the same dress twice. The public needs novelty! Miller had only a few days to create clothes and jewelry for the next series - and they were preceded by several more days of heated discussions. But … it was worth it.
They tried to imitate the heroines of "Dynasty" - and Miller creates a collection of dresses in a similar spirit for wealthy clients. He was nominated for an Emmy award four times for his costumes for the series. We should also mention the jewelry for the Dynasty TV series. Of course, the studio could not afford to dress the actresses in real jewelry, opting for gold-plated or silver-plated jewelry with synthetic stones. However, perfectly cut Swarovski crystals and Austrian false diamonds were not inferior to precious stones in clarity and shine. Nolan Miller's early costume jewelry is mainly represented by brooches with plant motifs created from ornamental stones and pearls, but in the 80s he worked on earrings and necklaces of more strict and laconic forms.
All good things come to an end sooner or later - and the nine-year history of "Dynasty" came to an end. The series was canceled in 1989 after a significant drop in ratings. However, thanks to him, Miller had literally world fame. He began to devote more time to private orders, coming up with dresses and jewelry for his clients on the red carpets. But he did not break ties with cinema either - in his track record, projects only multiplied. In 2002, he designed costumes for Charlie's Angels, a remake of the very same series that made Spelling famous before Dynasty.
Miller died at the age of seventy-nine years, for many years gaining life time from serious cancer. The dresses he created forever entered the history of fashion as a standard of extravagant style of the 80s, and jewelry, even if not created from gold and diamonds, became a collector's value.