10 Best Dragon House Fashion Moments (So Far)

HBO/Primetimer illustration

Daenerys Targaryen had a long legacy to live through across seven seasons of game of thrones, and dragon imagery was never too far from his closet, with clothing designed for the hottest and coldest climates. In Dragon HouseDany’s ancestors rule the Seven Kingdoms, and the symbolism is not enough as a matter of course — with a few exceptions. Several dragons fly in the skies above King’s Landing and its territories, so it would be too much to lean into the theme of scales with the choice of jewelry and material texture. Why imitate when they have the real one?

Costume designer Jany Temime takes the reins game of thrones prequel. She’s got big boots to fill, like Michele Clapton (who did the majority of Obtained) created a rich tapestry of designs, winning numerous awards. Even as later seasons floundered in storytelling, the costumes never went down in quality. Temime seized the opportunity, breathing life into the Targaryens at a time when they are not merely an echo of the past. The red and black scheme of their infamous sigil is essential to their aesthetic, but this eye-catching combination isn’t their only option.

The first six episodes feature many notable sartorial flexes and prove that fashion was thriving 200 years before Cersei, Sansa, and Daenerys. Here are 10 of the most significant looks (including the big time jump) in Dragon House so far:

Daemon’s Dragon Mark, “Heirs of the Dragon”

Unlike the rest of his family, Daemon Targaryen (Matt Smith) is anything but subtle when it comes to wielding the dragon symbol of his house. Is it silly to wear a helmet that has wings? After seeing the result, we’re inclined to say yes (but not in front of Daemon). At least he doesn’t wear it in battle, and this armor is reserved for exhibition events like the Heir’s Tournament. The craftsmanship is fit for a prince, and the red and black plumage is juxtaposed against the no-frills armor of Ser Criston Cole (Fabien Frankel). Prince Daemon’s peacock makes what follows all the more satisfying, and losing to Criston is what he deserves for sporting such a flashy design.

Funeral Chic, “The Heirs of the Dragon”

credit: HBO

Death is never too far away in Westeros, and the colors of the black and red Targaryen sigil are easy to match with mourning attire. Of note, only Rhaenyra (Milly Alcock) offers a flash of purple via her cape liner. By contrast, the loss of his wife and son is etched all over the black clothes of Viserys (Paddy Considine). Only gold breaks the monochrome ensemble – it is still king. Not that Rhaenyra is celebrating, but it differs from the pale shades before. She wore red at the Heir’s Tournament before her mother’s death, and this hue returns more frequently afterwards.

Royal Robes of Rhaenyra, “Heirs of the Dragon”

credit: HBO

Being named heir to the Iron Throne is a big deal no matter who; however, Rhaenyra becomes the first woman to receive this honor. Of course, that requires a dress and cape to match the occasion, and Temime delivered a stunning dress that Cersei Lannister would rip off for herself. From the front, the gold and red evoke the Lannister scheme. Still, Rhaenyra’s jewel-encrusted black investiture garment is full of symbolism of Targaryen royalty to match the occasion. It’s easy to miss King Viserys standing behind her as that bold look commands everything Warning.

Crab-Eating Masquerade, “The Rogue Prince”

credit: HBO

Despite literally spilling his guts, the Crabfeeder (Daniel Scott-Smith) never says a word while claiming the Bloodstone and becoming a symbol of the Free Cities. A big part of his creepy vibe is that he nails men to stakes on the beach and slowly lets his crabs devour them. The broken mask that doesn’t do a great job of hiding that Greyscale afflicts it adds to the mystique. The missing part adds to his fierce aesthetic as it suggests he’s been in many skirmishes in the past and triumphed until Daemon succeeded. Oh, and if you’re wondering if there’s anything familiar about that golden face, then you’re right. In a few centuries, Daenerys will find herself with a son of the harpy problem that took a few Crabfeeder-style pointers.

Play dress up, “The Rogue Prince”

Borrowing clothes from your mother’s closet takes on a sinister tone when seduction is the motive. Alicent (Emily Carey) is encouraged by her father, Otto Hightower (Rhys Ifans), to grab a few dresses when she stops by the king’s private quarters to offer comfort during her grief. Yes, Otto uses his dead wife’s dresses to make his teenage daughter look more grown up and, therefore, more attractive. Here, the blue number is provocative without being too overt in its cutout details. There’s no hiding how upset she looks in this dress, even with the gold accessories that tie it together. It’s also worth noting that Alicent recycles this garment in “We Light the Way,” and it no longer gives the little girl playing to be an adult. It’s also a warning that she hasn’t forgotten her roots.

In Bloom, “King of Detroit”

Even when winter came, King’s Landing offered a sunnier climate. Here, this is reflected in the lighter fabrics worn by young Alicent and Rhaenyra. Although she bristled at being married, Rhaenyra ultimately succumbed to social pressure to choose a suitor, which means wearing a dress that also serves as inspiration for a fancy wallpaper. In what would be a tender moment if he wasn’t her uncle, Daemon notices the necklace his niece is still wearing. Yes, it’s the same Valyrian steel token he gave her in the first episode. Of course, Daemon wears red and black because his wardrobe knows no other colors.

White and Gold Wedding, “We Light the Way”

credit: HBO

game of thrones weddings are more memorable for the violence that occurs than the wedding attire, which is a pattern Dragon House follows. Not that the bridal couture isn’t top-notch; however, it’s hard to focus on gorgeous dresses when multiple murders are happening. Every seamstress on this side of Westeros must fear that her work will be overshadowed, but it happens every time. In Rhaenyra’s case, her textured white and gold dress is understated opulence. The red jewels in his hair give Targaryen glitz, but it’s the groom who steals the show in gold brocade. Yes, Laenor Velaryon (Theo Nate) will end the day heartbroken after her real beau (in a matching cloth) is beaten to death. Before it all goes to hell, House Velaryon makes its mark.

An emerald dress service, “We light the way”

Another person steals the show at the wedding before a murder on the dance floor overshadows everything (Sophie Ellis-Bextor clue). Alicent voices her displeasure without ever having to say a word. Color shows loyalty, so when Viserys’ wife enters the banquet late in a hue that’s not in Targaryen’s scheme, it makes a strong statement. Green is Alice’s family color and is the hue the flames of House Hightower burn when they must call soldiers and bannermen to war. “We Light the Way” is Hightower’s motto and the name of this episode, which highlights the intent behind this outfit choice for a very public event.

Golden Child, “The Princess and the Queen”

The mid-season time jump gives Rhaenerys (now played by Emma D’Arcy) the chance to have three heirs to the throne. “The Princess and the Queen” opens with Rhaenyra in labor, and a request from Alicent (Olivia Cooke) to see the newborn is a nasty power move. Rhaenyra won’t let her baby out of sight, so she grabs the nearest gold and silver dress for the occasion. Husband Laenor (John Macmillan) is doing his part, and while baby Joffrey (named after Laenor’s deceased ex) is barely an hour old, the blanket he’s cradled in is pure Prince Targaryen decadence.

Pretty in pink

credit: HBO

Alice’s green statement wasn’t a one-off moment: a decade later, she still builds on her Hightower heritage. Now her mood is darker, as is her wardrobe (which also reads bluer under certain lights). The gold thread and sheer detailing of the sleeves, paired with the jewels that match the overall color scheme, speak to the strong hold she has over this realm – even though she is now at the mercy of someone who has a similar penchant for accessories. Alicent has chosen her path but will not give up the hand of her insect-loving daughter just yet. Helaena (Evie Allen) looks a lot like her half-niece Rhaenyra, though this dress looks more like the one worn by Cersei’s daughter, Myrcella, and things didn’t end well for her. Hopefully this pastel hue isn’t a bad omen.

Emma Fraser has wanted to write about television ever since she first watched My So-Called Life in the mid-’90s, finally getting her wish more than a decade later. Follow her on Twitter at @frazbelina.

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