This week we’re taking a break from the serious side of the apparel trade to share some of our joy with you. This project actually fell in our lap through one of our friends, Ashley Popio, who asked if we would be willing to do costume production for the Women’s Theatre Festival. The festival is a summer troop that does 5 productions based on the work of female playwrights. It was launched to help women build their careers in the visual arts. Treating the women in our community well is something we feel is important, and we also like and respect Ashley a lot. She’s one of those people who is constantly turning lemons into lemonade.
Space Girl just finished the dress rehearsal last night and opens today, so we thought we would share a few pictures of the costume production. We hope you will enjoy seeing a little bit of the crazy fashion we’ve been working on for the last two weeks. The show is a comedy based on a futuristic sci-fi roller derby.
A really fun aspect of doing a sci-fi show is you are not bound by the normal costume or apparel rules. You can color outside the lines both for patternmaking and everything else. Due to overall time constraints, the whole show was draped on the fly instead of through traditional flat patternmaking, which is incredibly difficult for most industry-trained patternmakers. Overall I think we pulled it off and had a great time in the process. You’ll get to see us do the opposite next month when we do a 1920s period show where everything is controlled and structured. I’m looking forward to all the yummy corsets and period embroidery.
Tickets to Space Girl are selling quickly, so if you’re interested in going next weekend, you can check availability HERE .
As an aside for those of you new to the business, costume production and design are different. For production, a shop or team will physically create all of the outfits for a show from the director’s vision. This differs from costume design which traditionally refers to the research and fashion sketches designers make at the beginning to help directors visualize the show. The major reason producers or directors approach production shops or ateliers is there is generally too much work for one person to do in the few weeks that most shows are executed. You need a team with a lot of different skillsets to complete everything on time and have it look good on stage. Costume shops generally deliver produce higher quality because they have a lot more hands to make stuff, and they source fabrics directly. The pricing is usually different, too. Instead of billing by the hour and by piece, they bill by the entire show at a price that usually includes complimentary alterations and repairs. If something unexpected comes up, they are prepared to handle it.
I hope that helps. If you attend Space Girl, you’ll enjoy laughing with others while encouraging creative women to develop their talents. And you’ll be supporting local theater, too…