New This Month

Go Inside Oscar-Winner Hannah Beachler’s Vintage Modern World

Production designer Hannah Beachler, who's responsible for those striking visuals in Black Panther, tells us about her must-haves.

Features Editor
hannah beachler portrait
Photography by: Brian Douglas

Telling tales visually through the environments she creates is Hannah Beachler's craft. She's painted Miami in pastel hues for the Oscar-winning Moonlight and conjured ghostly plantations for Beyoncé's Lemonade visual album; most recently, she dropped us into the fantastical orbit of Marvel's Black Panther. And her work on Black Panther was so revolutionary that it just helped her make history: On February 24, 2019, Beachler became the first African-American Oscar winner for Production Design. ("I had to run to the back of the warehouse where the catering was so I could yell," she told The New York Times. "And then I cried.") 

 

For each project, she works closely with the director and entire team, sketching and plastering walls with thousands of images. "If you don't force it and you trust your intuition, a map of where to go presents itself organically," she says. Not surprisingly, Beachler's own home in New Orleans's 11th Ward is eclectic, packed with finds from many different decades. "If a piece has a lot of character, I’ll imagine where it has been and how it came to be," she says. "It's about filling my home with stories."

 

Take Notes: Keep Your Handbags Looking Their Best
dress sunhat shoes apple watch eyeliner
Photography by: Courtesy of Apple (watch); Peter Ardito (others)

Beachler's Style

Work uniform: "Jeans, tank top, cardigan, scarf—and I always pepper in a healthy amount of vintage, like a Levi's denim jacket." ebay.com.


On her feet: Vans Sk8-Hi sneakers, $65, vans.com.


By her side: Tumi's Camilla tote, $445, tumi.com.


Go-to designer: "Demestik by Reuben Reuel designed the dress I wore to the 2016 Creative Emmy Awards. I love his colors and African-infused designs." Helga midi dress, $240, demestik.us.


Timepiece: Apple Watch, $369, apple.com.


Signature lip color: Perfect Red lipstick from AJ Crimson Beauty, $22, ajcrimson.com.


Makeup trick: "I've used Wet n Wild black liquid eyeliner since I was 19. It has the best brush and is super-easy to use. I believe in the age-old mantra: 'If it's not broke, don’t fix it.'" Mega Liner, $4, wetnwildbeauty.com.


Sun protection: "A big, floppy hat." San Diego Hat Company Ultrabraid XL brim sun hat, $44, zappos.com.


Skin-care staple: Dove soap, $4.50 for 4 bars, target.com.


On her nightstand: "I usually wear my hair in box braids, so I keep silk scarves to wrap them up Erykah Badu–style."

Hannah-Beachlers-vintage-modern-world-boxes
Photography by: Peter Ardito

In Her Home

Design vibe: "I mix midcentury modern with '50s retro and '80s contemporary."


Prized possession: "A papier-mâché sun and moon that my son and I made and painted together when he was 2 years old. He's 19 now."


Flower of choice: Black calla lilies.


Gift wrap: "Pastel tissue paper in blue, green, or yellow with pops of black or beige." $3 each, paperpresentation.com.


She collects: "Vintage desktop lighters. They're like little sculptures with hidden secrets."


Favorite movie: Sexy Beast.


Inspiring artist: "Photographer Ernst Haas. I love how he uses color, perspective, and reflection to create something new."

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Photography by: Peter Ardito

In Her Kitchen

Breakfast: "Coffee and waffles. I especially love Community Coffee's coffee and chicory. Wherever I am in the world, a good friend will send me some." $6.50 for 12 oz., communitycoffee.com.


Cocktail hour: A glass of Robert Mondavi Moscato D'Oro.


Dinner-party menu: "Crispy salmon, homemade mashed potatoes, and pan-fried cabbage."

 

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On the Go

Local dining spot: "Hands down, my favorite restaurant in New Orleans is Coquette."

stylus headphones
Photography by: Peter Ardito

Travel necessity: "When I'm on the road—and I'm away a lot—I always keep Beats Studio wireless headphones and a good playlist with me. Lately it's been Kendrick Lamar and 6LACK." $380, apple.com.


Her ride: "I'm a huge car lover. I drive a 2010 Land Rover Range Rover Sport HSE in midnight blue. It's a V-8, 8 cylinders, 5.0 liter, 375 bhp, with a Jaguar engine."


Charity: ASPCA, aspca.org.


Trusty gadget: Bamboo solo stylus, $20, wacom.com.