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Digital Subscriptions > Doctor Who Magazine > DWM Special 52: Costume Design > STREET SMART

STREET SMART

Sophie Aldred’s Ace was inspired by the urban fashion trends of the late 1980s, although Doctor Who’s producer insisted that certain old traditions were also maintained…
: Sophie Aldred as Ace in a publicity shot for Remembrance of the Daleks (1988).

”I’ve always loved stripes,” says Sophie Aldred, who, between 1987 and 1989, played Ace, companion to the Seventh Doctor. “When I went to my first readthrough with [Doctor Who script editor] Andrew Cartmel, I was wearing a stripy blue-and-white top, probably stripy socks as well, plus Dr Martens shoes and these cut-off army shorts from Laurence Corner in London. Do you remember those army surplus stores? You could get old fatigues and camouflage stuff . They were quite cool places to go.”

So Sophie’s own clothes inspired Ace’s look? “Eventually,” she says. “I didn’t have a jacket like that, all covered in badges: that was purely inspired by a picture in [style magazine] The Face.”

That picture, of 19-year-old Angela, was taken by photographer Sheila Rock for a feature in issue 87, cover-dated July 1987 – the same month Sophie began work on her first Doctor Who story, Dragonfire. Covering the “rap ’n’ rock” look, the feature pointed out that it consisted of “dungarees, black Levis, flight jackets, baseball caps, straw hats, safety pins, badges, cartoon characters, chains, car emblems and slogans that change week to week.”

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About Doctor Who Magazine

Few television programmes make the same production demands as Doctor Who. With such diverse settings as distant points in Earth’s history and alien civilisations in the far future, the series has always stretched the ingenuity – and resources – of its talented costume designers. This unprecedented magazine features numerous rare and previously unpublished illustrations showing how the look of a Doctor Who episode evolves from sketch to screen, plus exclusive interviews with many of those designers including: • Alexandra Tynan (costume designer in the 1960s who created the look of the Cybermen) • Barbara Lane (the designer of Azal, Alpha Centauri, the Axons and more – this is her first interview in over 40 years) • Lee Bender (designer and owner of Bus Stop, a boutique which supplied outfits for Sarah Jane Smith) • June Hudson (designer of the Fourth Doctor’s final outfit and many elegant costumes for Romana) • Colin Lavers (designer of the Fifth Doctor’s costume) • Amy Roberts (designer of Anthony Ainley’s Master) • Lucinda Wright (designer of Christopher Eccleston’s series as the Ninth Doctor) • Howard Burden (designer of the Twelfth Doctor’s costume) • Ray Holman (designer of the Eleventh and Thirteenth Doctor’s costumes, and Doctor Who’s current costume designer) Plus, the stars who wore the designers’ creations in Doctor Who look back at their characters’ clothes: • Anneke Wills (Polly) • Katy Manning (Jo Grant) • Sophie Aldred (Ace) • Camille Coduri (Jackie Tyler) • Catrin Stewart (Jenny Flint)