What? Yes, I'm still here.
It has been far too long since I've written anything my lovelies. Needless to say I have been keeping busy. I'm still working full time, plus working on a lot of different projects around town.
I recently opened White Hot for The Vagrancy as part of the Hollywood Fringe Festival. We have recieved several good reviews so far and have just a few performances left. Below are my quick design sketches for the production. I'm actually really proud of this gritty little show. It turned out looking exactly how I wanted it.
On a lighter note, I designed a "Goth Queen of Hearts" costume for my friend Lindsay to wear to Bats Day at Disneyland this year. I made the skirt, collar, and hat, and helped her coordinate the rest of the outfit. She was able to make the ribbon roses (at my suggestion) and painted some of them red. In case you were wondering, I went as the Mad Milliner.
The pieces for the hat were made by my mother on her embroidery machine from a pattern by Urban Threads.
One of the biggest problems you might come across in costume design is actually in your verbal communication. That is because, for the most part, there is not a universal language to describe different pieces of clothing. Some terms we have in common, but others are dependent on the region the item in question is from. Maybe you are studying costume history and you have a different text book from what a coworker studied. This has been an ongoing problem in the museum world so ICOM, the International Committee for the Museums and Collections of Costume has put out a web page that addresses this problem. Their Vocabulary of Basic Terms for Cataloguing Costume is broken down into women's, men's, and infant's clothing and is available in three languages (French, German, and English). Clicking on a topic will show you basic terminology as well as a simple diagram of the specific item.
Argo F#@! Yourself
I haven't been watching as many movies as I'd like to lately, especially considering how many are coming out right now that I'd really like to see. I did get to see ARGO last night, and let me tell you, it was amazing. It was so suspenseful, that even though I knew the ending going in, I felt like I was about to have a heart attack through half the movie. I was even holding my breath with the characters on screen. Every element of this movie worked seamlessly with the others, and in my opinion, it was perfect.
I have been told that the best costume design is the one you don't notice, because it supports the story without drawing attention to itself. But if you don't notice it, how can it be the best you might ask? In the case of ARGO, it is based on a true story, and all we have to do is see pictures of the real people and compare them to pictures from the film, (which ARGO does for us during the closing credits BTW.) Let me tell you, my mind was blown. If this movie doesn't get nominated for just about everything, but especially costume and makeup design, it will prove there is something wrong with the academy.
Long time no blog...
It’s been a long time since I’ve updated my blog. Things have been kind of crazy in the land of TiKi but I will try to catch you up on the highlights.
I have been given a promotion, of sorts, at work and have been very busy there. I can report that I have finished my hours to get into IATSE Local 705, the motion picture costumers union. This means that once I have finished the rest of my requirements for membership, I will be qualified to work in film and television, as well as in rental houses.
After three years living in Los Angeles, I have finally had some celebrity sightings! Ok, most of them have been through work, so I can’t go into details, but I did end up with a lovely autographed photo of Dita Von Teese.
Despite missing far to0 many events because of a killer cold, I must say that Halloween was a blast this year. For the first time in several years I made myself a costume. I was a steampunk saloon girl. I also helped teach some friends how to distress their costumes so that they could be Zombie Frank Sinatra and Zombie Marilyn Monroe. They did such a great job they ended up featured on the FOX news here in LA. It seems that since this summer I just can’t get away from zombies because then I had to help create a Zombie Amy Winehouse for another friend. They all looked most excellent.
Well, that’s the highlights for the past month or so. I’m continuing to work on my many different projects and hope to start selling things on etsy very soon. I’m also well into my classes for collections management which I’m enjoying quite a bit. Now that October is over, I hope to have some time to get back to updating everything more regularly.
It's a Small World After All!
I started my online program in Costume & Textiles Collections Management this week and I am very happy with it so far. As it turns out, most of us have a lot of connections. One of the ladies in the class actually worked with me when I was a Costumer at Disneyland. It has been about 6 years since I last saw her so it is great to get a chance to get to know her again! Other women in the class have also worked for Disney, and many of us have connections to the entertainment industry.
When I was a Research Assistant...
While I was attending Grad School at UCLA, I had the opportunity to do my work-study at the David C. Copley Center for Costume Design. The chair of the department, Dr. Deborah Nadoolman Landis, happens to be an incredible costume designer, teacher, and author. She has written some of the best books on costume design in film that are available today. I was lucky enough to work as a research assistant on various aspects of three of her newest books. One of these books is now available, and one will be available on October 15th. I do not know the release date for the third book.
As a research assistant, I had to not only know about costume design and fashion history, but also about computer programs and research methods. I had to be detail oriented, organized, and communicate all of the information I found clearly. I can not describe how cool it is to see my name listed in these books.
Clicking on the book covers will take you to amazon.com
Another New Beginning..
Today I start taking online extension classes through CSU Long Beach in Costumes & Textiles Collection Management. I am a little nervous about taking classes that are completely online, but I remind myself, this is yet another step in my long-term plan that is actually starting to see fruition. I am very excited about this program. Just a cursory look at the class website showed me links to so many new websites I can’t wait to explore. I am looking forward to adding some of them to the links section of my website. As my class goes on, I will definitely be sharing some of the tips and tricks I learn in the program.
Have you heard about Shout brand color catchers? They are brilliant. You put them in your laundry and they catch loose dye in the water so that your clothes don't bleed on each other. This also comes in VERY handy when you are doing laundry that is covered in stage blood. These are eight of the nine color catchers I put in the wash with my zombie laundry. This picture does not do the color justice, they are actually bright red but show exactly how much dye was floating around in the water.
Just wanted to introduce you to Sew Any Fabric. It is an awesome book to have in your library. It lives up to its' title by giving you directions for sewing on pretty much any type of fabric. This includes information on sewing machine settings and needle size; but just as important, it also gives you information on the care and handling of items made from the listed fabrics. Each page is devoted to a different fabric in a very easy to read bullet point format. I pulled out my copy this morning so that I could figure out how to clean something. Even if you don't sew, it's not really that expensive, so if you don't have it already, I would definitely suggest looking into it.
So it's been a while since I've posted anything, but not to worry, I have not forgotten you. I have however been having arguments with my internet provider. I am hoping that everything will be fixed soon, but it looks like it won't be on again until tuesday....
In the mean time, I have been learning how to do the cash desk at work, and contemplating laundry tips. I will be sharing some more on these subjects this weekend (I hope).
Next week I am also starting extention classes through CSU Long Beach. Nine months from now I should have my certificate in Costume & Textiles Collections Management. And of course, anything cool I learn along the way I will share here on the website.
I am a costume designer and artist, and I have a love for all things tiki.