What makes the best…? (Part 4)

Costume Designer??? Lots of passion for fashion – that’s for sure. But a passion for fashion isn’t enough. You may enjoy dressing yourself, but do you enjoy dressing others? In different time periods – perhaps real or imagined? Do you love thrift shopping? And sewing? Because all of these desires and skills are a must for a great Costume Designer.


The best are creative and usually on ridiculously small budgets. Sure, Broadway and Stratford designers can buy the finest silks for their gowns, but for the regular theatre folk, scrounging,  repurposing and borrowing is essential to costume a show on a simple budget.

The passion for fashion will allow the great Costume Designers the opportunity to find and sew amazing outfits for men, women, children and sometimes creatures that you could barely imagine. They’ll make them in a variety of sizes to match a large chorus of dancing boys and girls and they’ll find designer gowns abandoned in Value Village and scurry them home to their personal storage for some future use – because they are certain that they’ll be able to use them in the future… for something.

They’ll deal with Diva actresses and actors who don’t want to wear what has been chosen for them. They’ll deal with directors who know exactly what they want and others who have no idea what people should wear in 1950, Victorian times or even today. They’ll deal with deadlines and schedule changes, missing actors and torn or soiled items and do it all with a smile. And when the show is over… they’ll take all the costumes home and clean them, fix them, sort them and store them lovingly away for the next time they are called into use.

Then… they’ll start again – on the next show!

Author: Ceris Thomas

Ceris is a creative person. She teaches by day - and finds as much creativity in her job as she can and by night, (and during every spare minute she has), she creates through directing/choreographing and performing plays, drawing, writing, podcasting and now, sewing puppets. She likes to help others find and nurture their creativity and she loves finding out about other people's path to their own creative projects.

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