About

ABOUT RALPH

Ralph is one of the country's most popular and in-demand Costume Designers. His innate sensitivity and understanding of the way that clothes contribute to and enhance the actor's performance and interpretation of character is second to none. He works well under pressure and is a great collaborator, believing that the Costume, Production Design and Make-Up departments must always work together in a cohesive and respectful way in order to achieve the best and most appropriate, production-enhancing work. He thrives on the chance to work with actors to help truthfully tell stories through the medium of clothes. With 25 years of experience as a Head of Department he is able to provide any production with superb costumes and an efficient, easy-to-work-with team tha tfully back up his vision and creative conribution to the show. He also believes that it is essential that all cast feel happy and comfortable in their costumes and that they come to set relaxed, confident and happy. He feels privileged to be able to do a job that he loves.

TESTIMONIALS

Ralph Wheeler Holes is amongst the very best costume designers I have worked with. He is hugely creative, works with sensitivity and delivers everything required and more! His work on Call The Midwife has been exceptional”. Chris Aird, Producer

 

 

 

“In my experience working with Ralph has always been joyful and highly productive. He is a great team player, always thoughtful, courteous and considerate to everyone around him and whilst welcoming input and direction is also full of ideas and initiative. He runs his own department excellently and hence efficiency and delightful creative responsiveness is its hallmark. On BEOWULF Ralph’s clear-sighted and highly imaginative vision empowered him to conjure highly distinguishable human tribes and humanoid fantasy species within the large-scale setting. Besides being visually spectacular, this gave the audience great insight into the character’s psyches and keep track of the various factions and their internecine struggles. On ‘The Last Kingdom’ Series 2, Ralph worked in the real world period setting of 9th century England, helping delineate in exciting fashion a new chapter in the struggle between the Saxon King and the invading Danes. Ralph was charged with the difficult challenge of making the world richer and visually articulating the characters’ development from series 1, whilst also keeping true to the limited palette available to the times in questions. His superb creations absolutely nailed it! Each project brought its own demanding and specific challenges to which Ralph with characteristic enthusiasm applied his consummate professionalism and extraordinary creative talent to magnificent effect. I have no hesitation whatsoever in recommending Ralph Wheeler-Holes in the capacity of Head of Department, Costume Design and I myself look forward to any opportunity to work with him again”. Jon East, Director

 

 

 

“I am a huge admirer of Ralph's work. He dressed Whitechapel brilliantly. A keen eye for style and class and the overall aesthetic.

He is one of my favourite Costume Designers. I would work with him again like a shot .I don't direct often these days but if I do he would be top of my list. I can recommend him wholeheartedly and without reservation”. Phil Davis, Actor and Director

 

 

 

“Ralph is probably the most talented Costume Designer I have ever had the pleasure of working with. He has an incredibly shrewd eye for colour and form and really understands how to make the visuals sing, whilst absolutely serving the story. Actors love wearing his clothes and all of those of us lucky enough to work with him appreciate his positive, can - do approach and sunny disposition.  He is fantastic under pressure and works quickly and without complaint. Nothing is too much trouble and he is sensitive and comprehending of the needs of the script and the schedule. I can't wait to work with him again.” 

Claire Winyard Director

 

 

 

“I have known Ralph for several years since first meeting him on series two of the BBC series ‘Upstairs Downstairs’. We immediately hit it off, and have remained friends ever since. Ralph is incredibly hardworking, imaginative, and brought a huge sense of fun to the production. His designs, in my view, were exquisite and elevated the show. I have since requested Ralph on other productions, but unfortunately due to availability issues etc we haven’t been able to make it work. I would be delighted to work with him again”. Keeley Hawes, Actress

 

 

 

“I had the absolute pleasure working with Ralph on the BBC 2 single drama Against the Law last year. Firstly, Ralph’s expertise in his craft is second to none. With a considerable limited budget he worked wonders in recreating London in the 1950’s. He has a truly fantastic eye for detail and flair in what he does. But above all else, what I remember was his infectious personality and character. He was warm, friendly and a constant source of support and encouragement on set in what was a particularly challenging role for me. A true team player who takes the utmost pride and consideration in his work. Against the Law was received incredibly well and Ralph’s wonderful input was a huge factor in that being so”. Daniel Mays, Actor

 

 

 

“ Ralph Wheeler-Holes is a terrific Costume Designer! We all loved working with him on Upstairs Downstairs”

Anne Reid, Actress

 

 

 

“I was fortunate enough to work with Ralph on a film for BBC2 Television called “Against The Law”. The film was a period piece, set in England between 1952 and 1955, marking a seminal moment in the move towards a change in the laws that once criminalized homosexuals in this country. While I had no shortage of ambition for the film, it’s fair to say that the budget was incredibly tight and every department, not least Costume, needed to work miracles on a miniscule amount of money. Ralph rose to this challenge with such creativity, flair, good humour, dedication and generosity of spirit. What he managed to pull out of the bag on this production is nothing short of incredible. Without ever compromising the integrity of the period piece or selling short on his meticulous attention to detail, he and his department delivered such outstanding results that spectacularly elevated the production values on this film. The costumes and his colour palette were sublime and every one who appeared on camera turned up on set looking perfect - no mean feat given the number of scenes we needed to shoot each day in order to keep the wheels turning on a fairly punishing schedule.

Ralph, and the team he put together, are consummate professionals, super organized, always on time, always on form and just the nicest and most charming people one could wish to have as part of a production. We all loved working with him, the actors in particular feeling in the safest of hands and the warmest of company in the costume trailer which meant they arrived on set in wonderful form and ready to give their all. I would have absolutely no hesitation in working with Ralph again; in fact, I’d leap at the chance”. Fergus O’Brien, Director

 

 

I have had the good fortune to work with some of the best and most respected costume designers in the US , in the U.K. and in Europe , I have no hesitation whatsoever in recommending Ralph Wheeler Holes as one of the very best.

As an actress first, but also as a tailors granddaughter and an art lover, Ralph was a joy and an an education to work with. His passion for research and detail , his deep understanding of character coupled with a complete understanding of the actors' process and their need to feel "right" - all made my experience with him an absolute pleasure.

He was always available , always open to change , brilliantly creative , supportive and has a genuine desire to give the actors the tools and the confidence to do their best work.

The project we worked on together was massive in scale with historical/ fantasy and military elements , we shot for many months in some of the most difficult conditions but Ralph and the great team he put together did not miss a beat.

I admire very much the way he made working with the other departments in a cohesive way possible and a priority , and on a personal note I thoroughly enjoyed the times I spent in his magic workshop. It is fascinating to me, how a true artist has an eye for colour and tone and the ability to put materials together to create unexpected and dramatic results , - and still make it work on the back of a horse , on a muddy battlefield in subzero conditions , and keep the actors in dry boots.

I have the utmost respect for him as an artist , and a debt of gratitude for the inspiration , the professional support he gave and for just the pleasure of working with him.

Yours sincerely,

Joanne Whalley