Our favorite time-traveling drama, Outlander, will wrap its second season tonight with a super-sized 90-minute finale. So far this season, we’ve watched Jamie and Claire Fraser (Sam Heughan and Caitriona Balfe) first try to stop the Jacobite rebellion in Paris and then try to change the course of history by winning the war in Scotland. As for tonight? You’ll have to wait and see, but we can promise there will be a major surprise for the Starz show’s final episode of the season. No spoilers here!
Looking back on the last 12 episodes, we’ve noticed one major thing: Claire’s wardrobe has changed dramatically. From her over-the-top looks at the French court to her neutral and practical Scottish ware, her clothing has been all over the map—literally. These looks even differ greatly from Season 1, where she started in her chic 1940s garb and slowly figured out how to dress like an 18th century Scot. Now in Season 2, she knows exactly how to dress for each occasion and that becomes very apparent over the course of the episodes, from visits to Versailles to dinners hosted in their French home to the battlefields of Scotland. Through it all, one thing stands out: Claire always looks good!
"Whereas Claire had around six costumes in Season 1, she has at least 25 during this season," the show's costume designer Terry Dresbach tells InStyle. "It's a total visual feast."
Before diving in to the extended season finale, which airs tonight at 9 p.m. ET, scroll down and fawn over all of Claire's wardrobe highlights from the last 12 episodes below. That red dress, though!
1. The 1940s Suit
Season 2 kicks off in present time (which is 1948) and Claire has agreed to move to Boston with Frank (Tobias Menzies) and her unborn child. She quickly ditches her old 18th century Scottish Highland garb and opts for a sleeker and more sophisticated look—perfect for the '40s.
2. The Scottish-Meets-French Dress
When Jamie, Claire, and Murtagh dock in France, they're still wearing their Scottish wardrobes, but Claire's dress has a bit of French flair to it, with the ornamental floral pattern that peeks through. It's a perfect transition piece from Scotland to their new temporary home.
3. The Dior-Inspired Outfit
Costume designer Terry Dresbach decided on this look for a very specific reason. "That costume is based on one of the most famous pieces of fashion called the Dior bar suit," she explains. "When I look to the 1940s, it was all about this iconic Dior look. Christian Dior based his collection on historical costumes from the 18th and 19th centuries." Plus, Dresbach wanted Claire to stand out from the rest of the crowd. "It's the first time we see her in Paris and I really wanted it to make a statement: this is Claire and let us never forget that she's a woman of the '40s."
4. The Red Dress
When you look back on Season 2, you undoubtedly think of the red dress from Episode 2. "It's one of those iconic book moments," Dresbach says. "Red is such a domineering color and you have to be really careful with it. We decided early on to take inspiration for Claire from the 1940s because she's a woman of the '40s. We kept it simple and let the red itself be the decoration, as opposed to piling on a ton of lace and ribbons and jewels."
5. The Yellow Cloak
By Episode 3, Claire easily blends in with her French surroundings, opting for brighter colors, frillier construction, and the finest fabrics. Here, she's on one of her many expeditions to Master Raymond's, but still keeps her look as Parisian as possible.
6. The Embroidered Blue Coat
This look from Episode 4 is eerily reminiscent of her hooded yellow cloak. Claire has certainly developed her signature style while in Paris. It has an air of aristocracy to it as well, which makes sense since the Frasers are trying to saddle up with Prince Charles Stuart.
7. The Bejeweled Brown Dress
Just before Claire drinks poisoned wine, she wows in a bedazzled brown dress. Because she's entertaining politicians and high society, she opts for subtler tones, but the jewels and chiffon frills pack a punch. Plus, we love her on-trend choker!
8. More Head-to-Toe Brown
Even though this look is monotone, it pairs perfectly with her brunette hair. Next to Mary, she certainly stands out as well, with the subtle frill on the coat and the matching choker that ties it all together.
9. The Bow-Tied Coat
While at Versailles, Claire opts for outfits that are more colorful and over-the-top than when she's in Pairs. Here, she wears a bow-tied coat in a soft blue color and you can see her mauve dress sleeves peeking through. Is this the most color we've seen on Claire?
10. The Beige and Yellow Stunner
Second to the red dress, Claire's Versailles look in Episode 5 is iconic. She fits right in with the ladies at court, yet the overall look is reminiscent of her '40s style, making it unique to her. Plus, we could stare at the embroidered floral pattern all day!
11. The Understated Pregnancy Look
When Claire stays at home (pictured here with Murtagh), she doesn't dress quite as over-the-top. In fact, this look is reminiscent of her Scottish wardrobe with its olive green color and simple shape. It's those tiny pink florals embroidered on the front that remind her she's in Paris and not Lallybroch.
12. The Muted Pregnancy Look
Even though Claire is just about to give birth here, she still opts for a look befitting to their Parisian lifestyle. It's simple and muted, yet still has a beautiful and rich tone to it, complete with a frill above her growing belly.
13. The Jewel-Toned Dress
In Episode 7, Claire pays a visit to the King and begs for Jamie's release from prison. She opts to wear her most royal look in a rich jewel-toned fabric that's simple, yet clearly aristocratic. Did you notice that she's also wearing her poison-detecting necklace? It comes in handy later in the episode!
14. Back in Scottish Gear
Finally back in Scotland, Claire no longer has to deal with the French court and its over-the-top standards of dress. She pares down to her neutral tones and easy wardrobe, yet still maintains an air of sophistication with the knit sweater draping over her shoulders.
15. The English Look
Under the "protection" of the English at the Duke of Sandringham's estate, Claire—like the chameleon she is—ditches her plaids and opts for a more English look to fit in. Though she's trying to protect Jamie and the clan, she's quick to adapt to her surroundings and wear what seems most appropriate.
16. The Plaid-Wrapped War Look
By Episode 12, the clansmen are deep into the war with England and Claire is in the thick of it. Even so, she still keeps her look an understated chic, with a wrapped plaid blanket that doubles as a scarf, sweater, and skirt all in one!