- MFA in Costume Technology from University North Carolina School of the Arts
- BA in Clothing and Costume Construction from San Francisco State University
- AA in Fashion Design from San Diego Mesa Community College
A Costume Technician is trained in making patterns, understanding textile qualities and implementing sewing techniques. They support the Costume Designer by turning a 2D costume rendering into a 3D wearable garment.
I work closely with the Costume Designer and the dancer to create a costume that reflects the designer’s vision. I focus on the fit and make sure the costume enhances the dancer and performance. In this shop, some costumes are custom made while others are pulled from stock or bought.
For the custom-made garments, I start with the dancer’s measurements and draft a pattern of the garment on either paper or a computer program. I then cut the chosen fabric and stitch it together. Lastly, we have multiple fittings with the dancer to finish the garment for stage.
For the costumes that are altered from the costume stock or a store, I fit the garment to the dancer, taking into consideration the range of movement needed in that dance piece. The garment is then altered to the specifications of the design by adding embellishment, changing style lines, or dyeing amongst many other things that can change the original garment.
The CSULB Dance Program is committed to a high level of dance production for the students. You can see this by the large and well stocked Costume Shop and the hired Costume Technician that supports the Designer and Shop Manager. In many Universities, the Costume Shop is split between the Theatre, Dance and even Opera Department. At CSULB, we have a shop dedicated for only the dance shows. Also, Costume Shops sometimes have only one person running everything – serving as a Designer, Technician, Shop Manager, Shopper, Dyer/Painter and Stock Manager to name a few. That is a lot of hats for one person to wear! By having both a Shop Manager/Designer and a dedicated Costume Technician, we can support our dance productions with custom and well-fitting costumes that prioritizes your movement as a dancer and communicates a strong visual aesthetic.