American Horror Story: Coven, a deep dive into the inner-sanctum of a New Orleans-based witches coven, aired its season finale this week. The season showcased the strongest, most powerful female characters of the American Horror Story series thus far (a show that has never shied away from powerful women), and one of the strongest among them was the glorious Myrtle Snow, head of the Witches Council, portrayed by a plucky Frances Conroy.
Along with telekinesis and transmutation, one of Snow’s strongest powers was fashion. Clad in witchy cat-eye glasses, formal gloves, luxurious, Prada-reminiscent frocks, and a glittering cigarette holder, Snow was known to muse about her favorite designers: She talked lovingly of Chanel, disapprovingly of Halston (after he sold out to J.C. Penney, the horrors!), and delivered an inspired monologue about the history of her lord and savior, Diane Von Furstenberg: “I had a love like that once. Egon Von Furstenberg. He dumped me, but everything worked out all right in the end. You know why? Because he went on to marry the divine Diane. And without Egon’s support, Diane Von Furstenberg never would have created the greatest invention of the century, the wrap dress!” Bless, Myrtle.
With her beauty looks deeply reminiscent of Grace Coddington — her red hair crimped and blown out into a frizz, with minimal makeup — Conroy based her precise speaking voice on the drawl of legendary Vogue editor Diana Vreeland. (She learned the Vreeland voice by studying The Eye Has to Travel.) And, as anyone who watched the excellent finale this week knows, her final line of the series was yelling passionately into the hot air of the desert, “Balenciaaaagaaaaaa!” It was no coincidence that the scene was shot like a fashion editorial, with Snow in a crimson gown and ink-shaded parasol, leading a pack of black-clad witches. (Surely AHS’ brilliant costume designer Lou Eyrich mined some of her own looks for the series.)
As Jessica Lange’s Fiona Goode put it to Snow, “Look at you, developing a sense of style when no one was paying attention.” In honor of the season’s dignified end, click through our slideshow for some of Myrtle Snow’s best looks from the season.