I have been dreaming of costumes for my whole life.
I’m sure it started with my mother dressing me in beautiful dresses as a little girl. Once I turned Tom-Boy, I liked the sporty stuff. By High School, I was a New Romantic / Punk wearing leather skirts and just starting to explore the ‘unisex’ look. First year of college brought me into Designer clothes. This was one part.
Then there was Easter, Christmas, and Halloween. Easter shopping was elegant and always “something more’. Christmas was about color and celebration. Halloween, though, as you probably already guessed, was where the concept of DESIGNING took shape.
The early years saw store bought costumes. One favorite was “Casper The Friendly Ghost”. Dang! How old was then? Maybe 6? Maybe 7? Eventually, I started to come up with my own costumes. The routine was like this: “Gah! It’s Halloween tomorrow and I haven’t made a costume yet! What do I have?” followed by a search through the closet, then the garage. Inspiration usually came from a weirdly bent piece of metal or a branch that had been trimmed from the tree in the backyard. Once I had a concept, I would go back to the closet or more likely the scrap bag of fabrics. From there I would start “my build”. To be honest, there were very few times when I sewed an outfit completely though I sew. No! On such short notice creativity is the master of invention and costumes were constructed. I wish I had photos from back then. It would be interesting to see how many of those creations were truly successful and how many were… not.
Anyhow, those were the early years… the courageous early years where I learned how much I LOVED COSTUMES! I loved the potential. I loved the failures almost as much as the successes because inevitably those unsuccessful ones taught me to take a chance, even try a new technique, damn the consequences. Oh, I just love that! “Damn the consequences!”
In recent years, I’ve been more precise in my practice. My son’s Space Cadet costume was fun. And I’ve sewn Renaissance outfits for Dane, Patrick, and myself. Those were very demanding projects and didn’t employ any “build” to them. They were straight up sewing projects. The next “build” was my DALEK GOWN. I have photos of that process and will post them in a separate blog entry. The idea there was to de-construct a gown to re-construct it… and then add the DALEK to it. It was a very fast-paced project and really was the longest in the end.
And here I am today! Embarking on a super secret dream that I didn’t realize I had until it was handed to me. I am so in love with this idea! And yet, I admit, it’s a – – BIG. SCARY. COMMITMENT. That’s OK. I have a new motto this year – NO FEAR! Or put more poetically – FEAR NOT! Ha! It makes me feel better when I say that… and that is what gets me through all of the scary stuff I’ve been through in my life only now it has a name – FEAR NOT!
When I accepted this challenge, the first thing Patrick said to me was, “You HAVE to Blog this! Blog the whole process.” Something about that rang so true in me. So this is the beginning of that. Now that costuming my background is exposed, I’ll move on to my process.