Actress Emily Deschanel in character as Dr. Temperance “Bones” Brennan. Costume Design by Robin Lewis West. Photos courtesy of FOX.


July 26, 2013

Created by Hart Hanson and entering its ninth season, FOX’s hit TV show, “Bones” is very loosely based on the life and writings of novelist and forensic anthropologist Kathy Reichs, who also produces the show. The series, which incorporates both comedy and drama into each episode’s crime story, focuses on FBI case files and mysteries behind human remains.

The show’s leads are played by Emily Deschanel (as Dr. Temperance “Bones” Brennan) and David Boreanaz (as FBI Special Agent Seeley Booth), supported by a team of specialists played by Michaela Conlin, T.J. Thyne, Eric Millegan, Tamara Taylor, Jonathan Adams and John Francis Daley.

Dr. Brennan is a brilliant scientist and forensic anthropologist who works at the Jeffersonian Institution in Washington D.C. She is recruited by the FBI to solve cases by examining the victims’ bones (hence her nickname). Although Dr. Brennan spends the majority of her time in a lab, she much prefers historical and cultural research and her wardrobe is a direct reflection of this preference.

“Dr. Brennan’s wardrobe stretches from professional business attire to more casual,” says “Bones” Costume Designer Robin Lewis West, who worked on the last seven episodes for Season 8 and is in the throes of Season 9). Although she is often featured in her teal lab coat, (which was originally designed by Costume Designer Bobby Read in Season 1), Dr. Brennan’s personal style is a softer, professional and polished look that showcases her intelligence and wit.

West likes to mix in feminine trench coats, colorful blazers, fit-and-flare shirt dresses in saturated jewel tones, as well as “Burberry” plaids in greens and blues into Dr. Brennan’s wardrobe. The designer also spends a lot of time dyeing pieces to get the color just right and highlight Deschanel’s bright eyes. She pairs many of these button down shirts with black jeans and non-leather black boots (to accommodate Deschanel’s vegan lifestyle), accessorized with handmade silver and stone necklaces (many by designer Shari Wacks) to represent Dr. Brennan’s world travels.

By balancing Dr. Brennan’s cultured, academic background with Deschanel’s personal lifestyle preferences, West executes a distinct style for the show’s lead character while keeping her actress comfortable to boot.

West’s “Bones” Season 9 designs will debut on FOX in September.

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