The White Witch

"Her Imperial Majesty Jadis, Queen of Narnia, Chatelaine of Cair Paravel,
Empress of the Lone Islands, etc."

"I think of it more as her evolution. ... Her crown melts. She goes from icy white to midnight blue and then chain. Her silhouette narrows and grows as her sense of power diminishes or is reinstated. There is no in or out of her garments because she is not human, she is a witch."

(Costume Designer Isis Mussenden, in our exlusive interview)


Seven Transformations

see outline by Isis Mussenden below

Trailer screencap

The first six of Jadis' gowns have a very similar cut; therefore, instead of covering the same material in each page, go to the White Witch Fabric and Sillhouette page first.

For more detailed notes on each dress, including some super high resolution images, see the individual pages.

And, for even more details on Jadis' hair, wand, furs, makeup, and ice crown, check out The White Witch Look page.

Comments welcome, as well as discussion over at the Costumes area of the NarniaWeb forum.

" . . . itís as if she just covers herself up in a bit of Narnia. So the dress is made out of a substance thatís a little bit like the bottom of an amazing waterfall I saw in the middle of New Zealand. So itís like the White Witch is made of water or ice, or smoke, or, something natural. And being the epitome of, of all evil, of course, and this comes very strongly from the book, sheís covered in fur. And she has hair that doesnít look like hair, it looks like itís come from the ground - maybe itís roots or something. And her crown is made of ice, and it melts throughout the film, so itís not going to look like a costume that she got out of a wardrobe anywhere."

(Tilda Swinton from the New Straits Times interview)

The White Witch Look




"We broke her into seven changes. We start when we first see her she has no idea that there's any threat to her world ... She's in a beautiful state of ice, she's in her sleigh, she's in the snow. We move the second time to the dungeon. In the dungeon, her dress fills out into what we call the full monte and changes into exactly the environment of her castle.

And as the children enter, and as her power starts to disappear, we start to see her whole sillhouette melt and her colors get grayer, and she starts to lose her crown. It's about 50% now. And, from there we go to the white witch's camp, and her dress is completely bottom-heavy. It's gone into a deeper gray smoke-color, and her crown is smaller and smaller.

The next scene is Aslan's Camp where she comes in professed as the Queen of Narnia, in all her glory, carried by her four cyclops. And her dress shoots out again and she's in platinum. It's like her coronating herself again. From there we move to the execution, or the Stone Table, where she is in midnight blue, with a black rooster on her shoulder, which is a bit ritualistic, which is what the whole scene is about."

"And then she becomes a warrior, and goes into battle. Very tawny, and Byzantine, brutal, and there's no hint of snow, or femininity, or softness. That Maire Antoinette beauty is gone."

~Isis Mussenden and Tilda Swinton describing Jadis' seven changes, from The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe Disc II Behind the Scenes, Creating Creatures: The White Witch