Any Gurololi (Gory Lolita) can relate to the complications that costume designer Colleen Atwood faced when working on the movie Sweeney Todd. The two-time Oscar winner (for 2002’s Chicago and 2005’s Memoirs of a Geisha) has collaborated with director Tim Burton on films from Edward Scissorhands to Sleepy Hollow, so her problem wasn’t the gore – it was cleaning it all up.

Throughout the movie, the vengeful Victorian barber (Johnny Depp) literally gets blood on his sleeve – again and again and again. Atwood ended up making 25 shirts, eight pairs of paints and seven waistcoats for Depp. “The big thing was where was [the blood] going and how are we going to get it off,” Atwood says. “On the days – as we got used to saying – we had a kill, we had the people that ran the shirts up to the washers, the people on set taking care of the people, buckets of towels, changing booths, mini showers set up. We got really good at it.”

Her Sweeney Todd costumes are beautifully conceived and can inspire Lolitas of all stripes. For the Gothic girls, we have Mrs. Lovett (Helena Bonham Carter), who bakes the barber’s victims into meat pies. She wears black shoulder-baring dresses with tiers of ruffles on her backside; her frazzled hair is swept in a Mana-like up-do; her skin is ashen with sooty smudges under the eyes. Atwood explains that the darkness is authentic to the time: “When you went out on the streets, it was really dirty, so I wanted to add that layer of grubbiness.”

Sweet Lolitas can relate to Lucy, the barber’s virtuous wife, with her pink and white princess dresses and blonde ringlets. Her daughter, Johanna, wears blue empire-waist dresses in the vein of a Classic Lolita. There’s even something for Sailor Lolis. In the hilarious dream sequence “By the Sea,” Sweeney and Mrs. Lovett unwind in elaborate Victorian beachwear. (Depp doesn’t seem pleased with his cute, full-body, horizontally striped bathing suit.)

Go out and see Sweeney Todd – I think you’ll love the dark Victorian atmosphere and twisted humor of the film. Wishing you a bloody Nightmare before Xmas!