After Leia is adopted into the family of Senator Bail Organa (Jimmy Smits) at the end of “Revenge of the Sith,” she’s essentially raised as royalty. Her mother, Breha Organa (Simone Kessell), also happens to be Queen. Leia’s look early on had to show the connection between her mother and her royal roots, while still staying true to the character. In a chat with Variety, costume designer Suttirat Larlarb spoke about the contrast of seeing the formality of Queen Breha when Leia is first introduced in “Obi-Wan Kenobi”:
“The scene where the queen stops everything to retrieve her disobedient, playsuit-clad daughter while she is dressed very formally needed to express the distance Leia still has to traverse to become the icon in that white gown we eventually know. I wanted to make sure the references to the future, iconic Princess Leia we meet in ‘A New Hope’ were clear.”
To show even more attention to detail, Larlab looked to the natural world of Alderaan for inspiration when designing the Queen’s dress and the motif seen on the blue lining of her cape. She ended up going to one of the most knowledgable people at Lucasfilm for more information:
“I asked Lucasfilm’s Pablo Hidalgo if there were certain flowers associated with Alderaan, as I wanted to employ this notion that [family] symbols on royal clothing throughout history are often derived from the flora and fauna of the royal realm, and that the queens often express a connection to their homeland by wearing clothes whose textiles incorporate the use of those symbols through embellishment.”
Apparently, there was one “Star Wars” manga in particular that mentioned an Alderaanian flower called the “struggling pearl blossom” that Larlab used in the design. It’s a clever detail that reveals a little bit more about the culture of Alderaan before the entire planet was destroyed by the Death Star.