The fabulousness of Downton Abbey – the dresses, the dramas, the lavish dinners, the quick-witted one liners – has left us waiting (impatiently) for the Christmas Day special since the third series ended. And with the two hour episode set to finally air a week today (hurrah) we rounded up the Downton girls we are most excited about watching – that’s Cara Theobold (Ivy Stuart), Sophie McShera (Daisy Mason) and Lily James (Lady Rose MacCalre) - for an exclusive fairytale Christmas shoot.
Grazia / Photographer: Kate Davis-Macleod
And we think you’ll agree that they look absolutely stunning in the latest issue of Grazia. On the day of the shoot at a North London studio Cara and Sophie were the most excited about the rails and rails of beautiful designer gowns we had called in given that their characters only ever get to wear their servant outfits. ‘I only ever get to wear the one dress that my character, kitchen maid Ivy has and my scraped back bun that takes five minutes to do,’ she told us. ‘So today is really exciting because I get to have my hair done and have lots of make-up put on and wear pretty dresses.’
Meanwhile Lily admitted that while she loves clothes, she feels far more comfortable in a pair of jeans, and Sophie seemed determined to raid the snacks fridge before they all sat down to have their hair done. Hair and make-up took over two hours to get their dramatic eyes and huge 'dos looking just right and then it was time for them to get changed. Both Lily and Sophie wore dresses by Theyskens' Theory at Theory with Lily accessorising hers with a Isabel Marant at Matches cuff and Alexander McQueen belt and Sophie adding a Duffy at Browns ring. Once in her beautiful pink Jenny Packman dress, Cara couldn’t sit down because it was so body skimming while Sophie spent much time trying to get used to the crazy no heel high heels she was sporting.
The three girls couldn’t have seemed closer and we discovered on the shoot that Cara and Lily have actually been friends for years, given that they attended the Guildhall School of Music & Drama together. ‘I joined the show after Cara and so she integrated me into the group,’ Lily said. ‘The first time I went to Highclere Castle to film she introduced me to everyone. We were all drinking beer and it was like a big party.’
See it for yourself in this week’s issue of Grazia - out now! - and check out the behind-the-scenes video below...
Main image: Cara wears dress, Catherine Dean at Harvey Nichols; headpiece, Basia Zarzycka; bracelet, Pebble London. Sophie wears dress, Jenny Packman; necklace and crystal lizard (worn as belt), both Basia Zarzycka; skull ring, Duffy at Browns; tiara, Slim Barrett. Lily wears dress, Roberto Cavalli; feather collar, Basia Zarzycka; ring, Amrapali; necklace (worn in hair), Anonyme at Valery Demure.
Second image: Sophie wears dress, Burberry Prorsum at Matches; headpiece, Vintage Mode, worn with ostrich feathers, Gillian Horsup, both at Grays. Cara wears dress, Saloni at Matches; tiara, Slim Barrett.
Third image: Lily wears dress, Isabell Kristensen; blouse and belts, all Vintage Mode at Grays; pearl flower ring and green ring, both Pebble London; bee ring, Delfina Delettrez; skull (worn as headpiece), props by Christopher Woods at CLM.
Fourth image: Sophie wears clothes and accessories from main image.
Fifth image: Lily wears waistcoat, Roland Mouret at Browns; antler props by Christopher Woods at CLM
On front cover (L-R): Lily wears dress, Theyskens' Theory at Theory; cuff, Isabel Marant at Matches; ring, Pebble London; belt, Alexander McQueen at couturelab.com. Sophie wears dress, Theyskens' Theory at Theory; ring, Duffy at Browns. Cara wears dress, Jenny Packman; earrings, Amrapali; ring, Yves Saint Laurent at Liberty