These bad ass women inspired ‘Astronaut Wives Club’

The area Race could be the backdrop for ABC’s new miniseries, but rather associated with the astronauts, it is their spouses who will be front and center.

“The Astronaut Wives Club” (premiering Thursday at 8 p.m. on ABC) tells the real tale of seven modest army spouses whom rocketed to fame whenever their husbands — Scott Carpenter, Gordon Cooper, John Glenn, Gus Grissom, Wally Schirra, Alan Shepard and Deke Slayton — had been called as NASA’s original Mercury astronauts in 1959.

The women lived in Houston — many as next-door neighbors — providing support while their husbands went on death-defying missions and chased skirts in Cape Canaveral, Fla during the’60s.

Due to the fact guys fought a symbolic Cold War within the skies — with every effective objective celebrated being a dent in Soviet Communism — the ladies rallied around each other back. Additionally they became superstars within their right that is own by reporters making use of their every move chronicled within the pages of lifestyle magazine.

“They had been similar to the very first ‘Real Housewives,’ ” says series costume designer Eric Daman. “All eyes had been they unknowingly became fashion icons and scions of these social set. to them, and”

The 10-episode miniseries spans 1959 to 1971, a decade-plus retold through aid from NASA footage, Life mag pages and writer Lily Koppel’s 2013 oral history “The Astronaut Wives Club: a genuine Story,” on that the show is dependent. (Koppel is a consultant in the show; the 3 surviving spouses haven’t any formal participation.)

“One for the advantages of the area program could it be’s super well-documented,” says producer that is executive Savage.

Like this other ’60s-era show “Mad Men,” manufacturers sought to meticulously re-create the ten years: Ninety % of this costumes are classic, sourced by Daman on websites like Etsy and 1stdibs. Savage scoured Sears catalogs, women’s mags like Good Housekeeping and cookbooks to have a feeling of popular topics and colloquialisms on her behalf scripts. Midcentury areas inside their shooting location of the latest Orleans had been scouted to double since the area ’burbs of Houston and Florida.

Savage says, “Fashion, meals, automobiles, interior decorating — it is all really particular.”

Louise (Dominique McElligott, from left), Jo (Zoe Boyle) and Marge (Erin Cummings) celebrate their husbands being known as towards the Mercury Seven team in Thursday’s “Astronaut Wives Club” premiere. ABC/Cook Allender Louise Shepard AP

Louise Shepard

Played by Dominique McElligott

After her spouse, Alan Shepard, became 1st for the Mercury Seven astronauts to blast down, Louise had been christened the “First Lady of Space” — additionally the group’s first fashion symbol. Clothing shops also advertised the cream-colored dress/jacket/hat combination ensemble she wore towards the White home event.

“Her taste and magnificence is a bit more elevated as compared to others, more Vogue compared to the other wives,” says Daman, who frequently dressed McElligott in a far more palette that is neutral sparkly details.

The couple remained married and retired to California despite her husband’s reputation for infidelity. They passed away five days apart in 1998.

Marge Slayton Allan Grant/The LIFETIME Picture Collection/Getty Images

Marge Slayton

Played by Erin Cummings

Slayton originated in a background that is poor needed to conceal the reality that she had been a divorcee. Over the age of the other spouses, she was nicknamed marge that is“Mother” which had been integrated into her fashion.

“Back then, individuals didn’t dispose of clothes, and I also feel Marge may have peaked in the belated ’40s,” Daman claims.

He gave Cummings a film-noir style fitting for the ten years with lots of neck pads, slinky sweaters and form-fitting dresses to hug her curves.

Slayton, that has one son, divorced for the time that is second 1983 over spouse Deke’s cheating. She passed away in 1989 at age 67.

Jo Schirra Ralph Morse/The LIFETIME Photos Collection/Getty Images

Jo Schirra

Played by Zoe Boyle

If there’s a Charlotte in this group of gal pals, it is “perfect Navy spouse” Jo, whom rocked double sets and headbands such as a pro that is preppy.

“In true to life, there’s a complete benefit of her using the pearls and white footwear — we utilized that as her signature thing,” Daman says. “We actually desired her become prissy and pristine.”

That designed a lot of cream-colored clothes, sleeveless sheath dresses and pencil skirts combined with a sweater on the arms. But as her celebrity rose, perhaps the prim Schirra started trying out her design.

“She opens up since it continues on. Later on, she gets a brand new hairdo,” he claims. “She goes over the knee, begins using tan shoes.”

Jo and spouse Wally had two kids and stayed hitched until their death in 2007. She passed away in April at age 91.