The Comprehensive Costumer
Industrial sewing~Hand Sewing~Sewing Machine Repair~Tatting
Surface Design & Dying~Draping~Machine Embroidery~Tailoring
Repairs and Restoration~Project Management~Design
Costume Coordinator for Fezziwig's at The Great Dickens Fair 2006-present
I have been in charge of helping to organize and advise volunteers on costumes for the Fezziwig's Party at the Great Dickens Fair. The Fezziwig's party is taken directly from the Christmas Carol and is one of the major attractions of the fair.
Freelance Costume and Fashion Construction Service. 1995-present
I have, between my other projects, acted as a freelance costumer designing dresses and costumes for individuals and events such as Burning Man, Renaissance Fair, Dickens Fair and small theatrical productions. I also enjoy helping local designers start out by providing support and patterns for the development of ideas and product for the local market. I have developed the patterns for two major yoga wear lines: Bikram and Asana. I have recently completed projects in both men's and women's wear and I'm always adding new examples of my work to my online portfolio, at www.CoutureCostumes.com.
Costume Designer for Brisbane Dance Workshop 2008-2012
I delight in doing the costumes for Brisbane Dance Workshops annual show. This is a large project that involves over 100 children many of whom are in multiple roles with numerous quick changes. It is a very rewarding project because of I have been privileged to work closely with the artistic director and the choreographers in creating a complete aesthetic. In working for BDW, I design, build all costumes, millinery, wigs, and footwear with the assistance of parent volunteers. Wardrobe and makeup are run by volunteers with whom I also work closely.
San Francisco Opera 1996-2010
In 1996 I started out as a stitcher at the San Francisco Opera. It was one of the best experiences in my life to date. Working alongside master stitchers has given me an invaluable foundation for construction and project scheduling. In 1998 I took an opportunity to become a first hand at the Opera after draping a SFSU production of Cabaret. As a first hand I was responsible for assisting the cutter in fittings, for set-up of alterations and repairs for the chorus garments, for supervising the stitchers, for organizing task lists, prioritizing repairs, and for attending to the needs of the performers at rehearsals. In 2001 I took over as cutter of a team. As a cutter I continued my previous responsibilities and also was responsible for organizing and budgeting time and resources for hundreds of garments and performers though the season as well as the creation of patterns based on a designer's rendering. Among the shows we built at the Opera were: Saint Francois, The Merry Widow, Carmen, Abduction from the Seraglio. Thanks to my good foundation in project management and excellent relationship with my coworkers, we always finished on time.
Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco 1994-1998
Another rewarding experience has been working with the museum. The first work I completed for the museum was the construction of undergarments for the display of a circa 1760 court dress. I continued to provide a variety undergarments and patterns for exhibitions of different periods. When it was appropriate I was also allowed to assist in the conservation of antique textiles and act as consultant on period posture and fit. I took a great deal of enjoyment in helping with the installation of the Kasik Wong exhibit and others at the Museum and at the Legion of Honor.
San Francisco State University 1992-1996
In 1996 I graduated with honors from San Francisco State University with a degree in Technical Theater. In addition to my student design project and crews, I also served as a TA on SFSU's production of Sweeney Todd and make-up designer for The House of Bernarda Alba. Post graduation I returned to SFSU to act as cutter for a very elaborate production of Cabaret. Along with my degree I also completed a large body of supporting classes in fashion, art, metal working, textiles, illustration, and patterning. During my time as a student at SFSU, I held many different positions with local fabric stores, vintage clothing stores and other retailers. I have a good relationship with many of the venders in the Bay Area. I also have a good knowledge of Bay Area resources.