Costume Crafts and Millinery  

 

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Articulated Angel Wings

Design and Construction

I worked with the costume designer for Adelphi University's production of Angels in America: Millenium Approaches to design and construct  a pair of angel wings for the play's final scene.  

 

The main structure of each wing consists of two hinged PVC pipes, which are attached to a bodice that distributes their weight across the actor's torso, and also supports her body through her blocking. Movement is controlled by cables looped around the actor's hands which, when pulled slightly, extend the hinge. 

 

I also draped and constructed the Angel's dress to accomodate the structure of the wings and harness hardware. 

Showgirl Headpiece for Metropolitan Opera

Construction 

I constructed this headpiece for the Metropolitan Opera's new production of Cosi Fan Tutti as a Costumemaker in the Crafts and Millinery shop.  The base is a felt skull cap covered in brocade with an elastic and Velcro back closure. I trued-up a pattern from a mock-up and used it to crate a wrapped wire frame, which I then wrapped with maline as an anchor for sewing a double layer of nylon net. I created backing structures for the sequin motifs out of satin-covered Fosshape and sewed them to the front and back sides of the frame, and sewed on beaded fringe trim. 

The main challenge of this project was maintaining flatness and symmetry while creating and manipulating the wire frame. 

Masks and Headpieces
Design and Construction

I designed and fabricated a series of masks for Adelphi University's production of Brecht's Good Person of Szechwan.  In Brechtian theatre, these masks represent the characters' loss of identity to their environment. Each mask is made out of materials from a character's livelihood, such as money, jewelry, sack-cloth, and combs. Awards: KCACTF 2013 Region 2 winner in Allied Design; national finalist. 

 

I designed and fabricated a donkey headpice for Adelphi University's production of Te Deum for Young Comedians, an original production which combined imagery from Catholic, Pagan, and tribal traditions. It is constructed from milliner's wire and raffia. 

 

For Adelphi University's production of Hopper, a new musical, I created a series of masks for a Halloween party scene. They needed to allow the actors good visibility to dance safely, and be comfortable and sturdy enough to survive the run of a physically demanding poduction. 

"Mascot" style Costumes 

Design and Construction (Hopper)

Construction (Ballet Hawaii's The Nutcracker)

Hopper at Adelphi University required a character to be dressed as a punching bag. I designed this costume and constructed it out of upholstery foam, knit fabric, webbing, elastic, and steel boning. The main goal of this costume was to be silly and humorous, but it also had to facilitate and withstand a great deal of physicality and dancing. 

I constructed a set of five sea turtle headpieces for Ballet Hawaii's production of The Nutcracker to the specifications of Costume Designer Christine Darch. Since they would be worn by children, they had to be both comfortable and sturdy. I used layers of upholstery foam and Spandex to build up the beak and scale shapes, and painted details onto the eyes and noses. Working as one of several off-site makers, it was important for me to stay true to the rendering and make the headpieces easily adjustable. 

Panniers and Hoops for Metropolitan Opera

Construction

This project was for the Nymph sister characters in the Metropolitan Opera's production of Rusalka. I assisted in the process with construction, alterations, and finishing of the sets of panniers and hoops. The main structure consists of heat-shaped nylon rods suspended from a belt. Net fabric was then draped onto the skeleton and arranged with artificial foliage to create unique, organic forms. A major challenge was maintaining the proportions of the rod spacing across each performer, and making sure that they hung parallel. We also worked to ensure that the hoops and panniers could move gracefully with the performers through their choreography, strategizing how to best utilize the rods as anchors for decorative materials. 

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