Wednesday, 2 July 2014

I was interested to see this article at Flavorwire magazine - 'costume test photo's'.

Fitting photo's are a vital part of our process but it is unusual to see them published. There is a big element of trust involved in the rehearsal period, the photo's being quite intimate because the actors generally aren't wearing any make-up and the costumes usually have pins and visible markings for alterations and whatnot. 
They are most definitely not for sharing. 
Maybe there is a thirty year rule or something! 
Anyway, in these old studio photographs I particularly like the blackboards and the small details in the notes; the real names, costumer credits, black and white or colour tick-box options, the scenes for each costume all plotted in advance. They don't appear to be expecting much to happen organically throughout filming whereas I'm used to lots of costumes filtering onto the truck throughout the schedule and I am open to new ideas from cast throughout. Even when the costumes all have to be made it's not the norm to have them all ready before we shoot, the workroom will be busy making most of the way through.
They reek of a slower pace of life.

It's quite amazing to see technology change so fast. I used to be sent out to Snappy Snaps with a roll of film to get prints developed and then go to use a public phone box so I could let the designer know how long it was going to take.  Around that time I can remember saying to Phoebe de Gaye that one day I would be able to sample for her and send pictures from my mobile phone back to her in the office, saving me the journey from the West End to Angels so she could make a decision and then for me to go back to town to buy the items. It seemed like a sci-fi vision at the time and, believe me, it wasn't very long ago.



Monday, 30 June 2014

An Amazing Photogrpahic Discovery - Spitalfields Life.


Tuesday, 24 June 2014

Tuesday, 17 June 2014


The John Paul Gaultier exhibition at The Barbican is excellent.

Saturday, 7 June 2014

Natalie Ward sent me this saying how well it sums up being a Costume Designer!

Thursday, 5 June 2014

My last job was about the Suffragettes and in order to reproduce their sashes and medals we worked with Toye Kenning and Spencer, a company with a fascinating history which traces back to 1685.

These photo's are of our Votes for Women sashes, we also ordered medals which the women received from the WSPU after serving time in prison and hunger striking. Toye had made the original medals and were able to delve into their archive, incredibly finding the actual dies that had been made to cut the medals at the time, bringing an authenticity to our film which none of us had foreseen.

The ribbon was woven and the sashes embroidered to the most pleasingly high standards. When the delivery arrived on our costume truck and we finally handled the material that we had been looking at reference photographs of for months, we felt very much in touch with the women who had inspired our story

Freddie Toye, who helped us throughout the manufacture, kindly invited us to do a site visit to see the whole process and so I think a couple of us are going to do a field trip this summer - can't wait.

Saturday, 3 May 2014

Fife Council have an archive of photographs of criminals arrested around 1910.
Betsy Gordon was wearing a pretty spectacular hat when she was arrested.
I love this image.

Monday, 21 April 2014

Sunday, 13 April 2014

Ebay today.

Saturday, 29 March 2014

See some very good early photographic reference material at The Mirror of Race online exhibition.