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Ugly Betty's Fabulous Fashions

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Ugly Betty is known for its eccentric, fashion-forward costumes, which are put together by Sex and the City's stylist extraordinaire, Patricia Field. TVGuide.com spoke with Paolo Nieddu, Field's assistant costume designer, to get some insight on selected fashions from the show. "Pat Field created this poncho and it really set the tone of Betty's Mexican heritage," says Nieddu. The same poncho from Season 1 has just been duplicated for Betty's new office at Mode, where it's framed on her wall. "It can be interpreted that she's hanging up the old Betty."Encore episodes of Ugly Bettyair Saturdays at 7/6c on TV Guide Network.
2 of 16 James Devaney/WireImage.com


Field calls Betty's Season 3 style "kooky couture." "This was where we would take highly fashion-forward, label-conscious clothing and throw it all over Betty," Nieddu says. "So she learned something from being at Mode, but is still putting it together wrong." He says that Betty is in somewhat of a cocoon phase — hence the butterfly belt. Butterflies will be a recurring symbol this season.
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For Wilhelmina, Field chooses a lot of Thierry Mugler vintage pieces, including this jacket. It has a strong and powerful edge but is still feminine and sexy. "We found the woman that used to be Mugler's muse in the late '80s and we basically bought her closet," says Nieddu.
4 of 16 Eric Liebowitz/ABC


"We really wanted to clean up Judith [Light] from early seasons and make her more modern and colorful in keeping with that Upper East Side look," says Nieddu. Some very high-end jewelry was loaned to wardrobe — including these $35,000 pearl and diamond earrings. Daniel's early look — fat, printed ties — has been sharpened up with skinnier neckwear, trimmer collars and sleeker fits.
5 of 16 Eric Liebowitz/ABC


The Blythe bag Betty carries became her signature Mode tote. "One of the designers got this from a stylist friend of hers that was having a sale on his clothes. Pat loved it because it's a little Betty on the bag," says Nieddu.
6 of 16 James Devaney/WireImage.com


Betty wears Prada over Anna Sui and her signature belt. This fall, Betty trades in bobby socks for screen-printed tights and flat boots. Christina is wearing a vintage YSL tunic under a kimono and long pearls. "She's got a little Asian flapper vibe going," says Nieddu.
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Amanda carries a Chanel bag, and her chubby fur jacket was found at an antique mall. According to Nieddu, the YSL heels in this photo were Becki Newton's favorite shoes because they made her so tall. "Everything she tried on after that she said felt like a flat."
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"Hilda's our round-the-way girl from Queens," says Nieddu. For her wardrobe, the costume designers often shop at Marciano and on Steinway Street in Queens. "We go to stores where girls like Hilda will shop." Nieddu describes Hilda's outfit as her "'70s J. Lo. look."
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Marc presents to YETI in head-to-toe Prada. Amanda wears a Jeremy Scott tube skirt with a book print. "She's kind of his little bookend," says Nieddu. "We try to do subtle little plays like that."
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Betty goes vintage in a Leonard dress with a yellow J. Crew coat and vintage gloves and bag. And let's not forget those colored tights. "We always do bright hyper-reality, and Betty always has to pop," says Nieddu. Amanda is in head-to-toe Phi. "The heel on those shoes actually broke while we were shooting and we had to run to the Phi store to get another pair," says Nieddu.
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For Betty's springtime look, the costume designers did a lot of A-line silhouettes and full skirts, like this vintage dress. "We really try to define her waist in Season 3, which was lost in Season 2," says Nieddu. "We took the same cardigan, full skirt and clashing patterns, but tightened it. It still has that whimsy feel." Nieddu describes Marc's look as having "a little Rat Pack vibe," complete with Gucci glasses and Dolce shoes.
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For the MAMA Awards, Betty wears her version of a red-carpet look. The top is an exaggerated version of her usual blouse, paired with a lamé skirt and vintage YSL cummerbund. "We put a Sonia Rykiel swan pin on Betty in the same vein as the butterflies. But instead, it's like we're saying, 'Here's the swan,'" says Nieddu.
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This outfit is from just before Betty's transformation in Season 4. "It's a solid color because in this episode, all these butterflies land on Betty. So for special effects reasons, it had to be a color that wasn't found in any of the butterflies," says Nieddu.
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"Here we have our new Betty with a look that is more toned," says Nieddu of the Season 4 picture. Betty is wearing a Kay Unger suit and new glasses. "They're metallic, thinner and slightly more pointed," he says.
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We barely recognize Betty without the braces and glasses. Her gray jacket even matches her black pants.
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Betty shows off her newly unveiled pearly whites at her sister Hilda's wedding wearing a deep green, one-shoulder dress and long drop earrings. Encore episodes of Ugly Bettyair Saturdays at 7/6c on TV Guide Network.