Costume realism and detail
Running time: 0.55mins
Film maker: Joanna Coates
The costume makers take great care to make costumes that look exactly like real clothes, even down to details that the audience can't see. This allows the actor to get into character and treat the garments as they would their own clothing.
The Costume Department at the National Theatre expands far beyond the main workroom where the ladies makers and gents tailors make costumes. There's also a Dye Shop, Wig Department and Costume Propmaker. Crucial to the process of putting on shows are the dressers and maintenance staff in the running wardrobes.
Costumes look exactly like real clothes, even down to details that the audience can't see.
The dye room is often called upon to replicate patterns on fabric by using techniques such as screen-printing.
Watch a seamstress expertly make and attach sleeves to the body of a jacket.
Ashley Holtom talks about her role as Head Buyer for the costume department.
Alterations are made to a skirt after the first fitting.
For a contemporary production design the Head Buyer will shop at high street stores.
This is where fabrics are dyed, printed and distressed.
Rae Smith talks about designing costumes for All's Well That Ends Well.
Soft props range from bedding and curtains to dummies.
A ‘Costume Bible' records information about all the costumes from a particular production.
In order for costumes to look realistic onstage, they often go to the dye room to be ‘broken down'.
Costume props include items such as jewellery, armour or millinery.
The head buyer spends most of her time outside the office, tracking down items of clothing or accessories.
An overview of the National Theatre's large and varied Costume Department.
A look at the kind of fabrics used in period men's tailoring.
Drafting a pattern for a jacket for the production of War Horse.
Costume Designer Mark Thompson talks about his designs for the 18th century costumes in Jamie Lloyd's production of She Stoops to Conquer.
Creatives from the production talk about the process of Making Timon of Athens for the National Theatre.
See Emily Taaffe dressed layer by layer for Nation.
The costume supervisor is the key liaison point between the costume workroom and the costume designer...
Ladies makers, mens tailors and alteration hands make up the team in the costume workroom.
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