WCW: Alicia Vikander


For a while there it was looking like Swedish actress Alicia Vikander was vying with Lily James to be the next historical costume movie darling. She’s been diversifying in recent years, but her numerous appearances in frock flicks are nonetheless impressive! Let’s run them down:


Min balsamerade mor (2002)

“In 1816, the 35-year-old Baroness, Jacquette Du Rietz dies. Count Gustaf Piper’s grief is huge, and in his despair he lets embalm his beloved Jacquette,” per IMDB.

2002 Min balsamerade mor

She looks like every little girl at Dickens Fair!


A Royal Affair (2012)

Vikander plays Caroline Matilda of Great Britain, who married Danish King Christian VII in the 1760s and had an affair.

2016 A Royal Affair

Nice costumes, even if many are rewears.

2016 A Royal Affair

Love the trim layout here.

2016 A Royal Affair

Note: Do not marry this man!

2016 A Royal Affair

But do shag this one ;)


Anna Karenina (2012)

As Kitty, the young girl who is initially in love with Vronsky (Anna’s soon-to-be lover) but eventually marries the older Levin, in this adaptation of the Tolstoy novel.

2012 Anna Karenina


2012 Anna Karenina

Okay this is pretty and ballerina-y.

2012 Anna Karenina

I like the sleeve shape, but I’m confused about the era?


Testament of Youth (2014)

An adaptation of a World War I memoir by war nurse Vera Brittain.

I’m really not a fan of that dress. The waist goes too low, and I guess they’re trying to make her look like a Barbie doll, in which case, congratulations?

This, however, is lovely — gorgeous knit!

2014 testament of youth

I’m not sure about these shapes. The cardigan looks like it’s from Talbot’s?


The Danish Girl (2015)

As real-life artist Gerda Wegener, wife of Einar Wegener, who over the course of the film realizes he is transgender.

The Danish Girl (2015)

Fabulous print! Obvious wig!

The Danish Girl (2015)

Vikander’s character is there to be the conventionally gendered option.

2015 The Danish Girl

Beautiful color mix.


The Man from U.N.C.L.E. (2015)

A black comedy directed by Guy Ritchie, adapting the 1960s TV show. Vikander plays Gaby, daughter of an alleged Nazi scientist.

2015 The Man from U.N.C.L.E.

LOVE so much about this. | THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-HO-Daniel Smith/Warner Bros. Pictures

2015 The Man from U.N.C.L.E.

Those bracelets!

2015 The Man from U.N.C.L.E.


The Light Between Oceans (2016)

Based on a novel, the film is set in the 1910s and 1920s. Vikander plays one half of a couple who adopts a baby girl found in the sea.

2016 The Light Between Oceans
2016 The Light Between Oceans

Sounds heartbreaking, looks boring in the costume dept.


Tulip Fever (2017)

Another novel adaptation, a 17th-century painter falls in love with a married woman (Vikander).

Tulip Fever (2017)

So great to see a film really embrace a weird-to-modern-eyes era!

Tulip Fever (2017)

Love the giant stomacher.

Tulip Fever (2016)

And you can’t go wrong with oodles of satin!


The Green Knight (Coming Soon)

Okay, so technically it’s a fantasy film, but I wanted to fill things out! This is a fantasy take on the medieval Arthurian poem Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. Vikander will play “Lady / Esel.”

The Green Knight

Okay, that’s some cool hair!


What’s your favorite of Vikander’s frock flick roles?


About the author



Kendra has been a fixture in the online costuming world since the late 1990s. Her website, Démodé Couture, is one of the most well-known online resources for historical costumers. In the summer of 2014, she published a book on 18th-century wig and hair styling. Kendra is a librarian at a university, specializing in history and fashion. She’s also an academic, with several articles on fashion history published in research journals.

13 Responses

  1. Susan Pola Staples

    Tulip Fever is my favourite bc of the costume detail and it also has Holliday Grainger. Close 2nd is Royal Affair, even if several costumes were reused from other flicks. Gotta love those ruffles.

  2. Alyssa

    I don’t know if you guys take WCW recommendations here, but what about Mia Wasikowska and Katie McGrath? I feel like they have both shown up a lot without getting a WCW. The one MCM you guys did on Colin reminded me of Katie – she was an awesome Morgana in the BBC’s Merlin with him.

    • Coco

      MCM request for Mads Mikkelsen! He might be best known to American audiences as Hannibal and Le Chiffre, but he has quite a few historical roles in European films. Also I saw yesterday that he’s in talks to take over Johnny Depp’s role in the “Fantastic Beasts” series.

      Also request David Suchet, because Poirot 4 Ever.

  3. Saraquill

    The only frock flick of hers I’ve seen is The Man from U.N.C.L.E. which disappointed me. I’ve seen episodes form the original series, and the movie has a very different tone.

    • Boxermom

      I think that one of the reasons I liked it so much was because I hadn’t seen the original series. :)

  4. Lily Lotus Rose

    Here is a sentence I thought I’d never write: The Man from U.N.C.L.E. was my favorite. She’s very pretty and a good actress, but I must say that after looking at these pictures she does not convince as a blond. As a lover of Arthurian tales, I’m so stoked about The Green Knight!

    Re Mads Mikkelson: I second the motion for a Man Candy Monday focused on him. He’d be an interesting re-casting for Grindelwald, but I’d been longing for a way for Colin Farrell to return to the Fantastic Beasts series and so that’s what I’m hoping for!

  5. Lily Lotus Rose

    PS: Dominic West in that photo from Testament of Youth is the best thing I’ve seen all day!

  6. Kathleen Julie Norvell

    Gotta say Tulip Fever. A group of us 17th century reenactors saw it before it disappeared (1 week!) and drooled the whole time. One of us was of Dutch ancestry. Second fave was A Royal Affair because Mads.

  7. Anonymous

    “As real-life artist Gerda Wegener, wife of Einar Wegener, who over the course of the film realizes he is transgender.”
    *she is transgender, not he
    Lili (born Einar) was a woman, with female pronouns:)

  8. Jose

    Gosh I didn’t realize how many of her films I have watched I’m fascinated by her Kitty for some strange reason probably because she looks like my idea of the character i remember seeing her in some medieval witch hunt stuff she was a young witch but wore some common folk things
    And please how could a beautiful and elly-gant princess like her be married to such a ugly (and crazy) prince and shag that plastic surgery ugly old guy?
    Not so fond of testament of youth probably because I saw the BBC miniseries and couldn’t stop making comparisons.