Though wrestling gear may not always be appreciated, it plays a vital role in the creation of characters. The gear needs to be functional and comfortable, which is why wrestlers depend on designers behind the scenes. With their team’s effort, wrestlers can perform at their best.
WWE contributor Sam Roberts, who hosts the podcast “You Love Wrestling” that was titled “Not Sam”, recently spoke with design team member Sarath Ton about the history of WWE gear. They discussed how the division started off making jeans for pop-duo The Rockers and went on from there to make more styles and lines of clothing.
“There’s three of us backstage,” Ton said. “Myself, Terry [Anderson], who’s been there since the very beginning … [and previously] her sister Julie. The position of seamstress at WWE was created specifically for Terry and her sister, so literally everything that you’ve seen from, I want to say, ’87 on, ’88 on. … The first set that Julie made was for The Rockers, and then they started ordering from her all the time. Then they started making stuff for The Hart Foundation, Sensational Sherri, and then eventually they got brought on.”
Ton also explained that the original idea for bringing Maria Kanellis and Andrea Taleen on board came from none other than Undertaker and Kane’s manager, Paul Bearer. He was the one who suggested that they hire the women to be seamstresses on the road so they could keep them as part of their company.
“Julie was a fan of The Rockers, and she had made tights for them and just brought [them] to them one day,” Ton continued. “And they just really liked it, so they kept ordering them from her.” Ton credits the two women for helping define the aesthetic of professional wrestling from the 1980s through the 1990s.