The Real Star of "Spring Breakers": Costume Designer Heidi Bivens

The cast of Spring Breakers. (Photo: Division Films)

Read anything about controversial director Harmony Korine’s (“Kids” “Gummo”) new film “Spring Breakers,” about a gaggle of co-eds gone wild, and you’ll be inundated with information about the stars’ costumes (or lack thereof). 

In her review for The New York Times, Manohla Dargis describes the spring breakers, including ex-Disney actresses Vanessa Hudgens and Selena Gomez, as “beautiful and monstrous,” and “representatives of the decline of the West in hot-pink bikinis.” The unrecognizable James Franco “wearing grillz and long cornrows,” is a “self-annointed gangsta.”

As the costumes play a huge part in defining these characters, the real star of “Spring Breakers” just might be its costume designer, Heidi Bivens.

Heidi Bivens and Justin Theroux in 2010. (Photo: Getty Images)“Working with [Korine] was awesome; he is the ultimate collaborator,” Bivens said in an interview with beauty blog Into the Gloss. “For the girls the question was: where do girls like that really buy their clothes? I shopped at mall stores, I pulled a lot from designers—everyone from American Apparel to The Elder Statesman—and designed some pieces myself. I had some bathing suits designed, too, but others were rented from a thrift store, some were Playboy, one is from Hot Topic, and some are Victoria’s Secret Pink. It was a combination of stuff. We shot over a few months in St. Petersburg, Florida during actual spring break, so it was pretty authentic.”

Bivens has worked in New York for several years as a stylist and has just recently made the transition into film. Her personal life made big headlines in 2011 when her long-term boyfriend actor Justin Theroux left her for Jennifer Aniston. But it looks like Bivens is doing just fine.

New York based retailer Opening Ceremony has just announced they are partnering with Bivens and artist Todd James to create a “Spring Breakers” clothing line. If the designs echo the vibe of the film, one can expect to see lots of neon string bikinis, mesh jerseys, clothing embellished with pot leaves and “dripping ice cream cones,” and beach wear like crop tops, towels, and sweatpants.

The “Spring Breakers” collection will be available in stores and online at Opening Ceremony on March 22, the same day the film opens nationwide.

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