Tuesday, 27 June 2017 09:00

Remember when Hardware Stores were boring? … the Dad-zone? …

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I do, at least, I used to feel that way about entering into the world of nuts and bolts, power tools and fixtures; that is, until I began working as a Costumer. Now, I look at Hardware Store shopping on par with a Vintage Collectables shop; I’m always likely to find a few treasures that I can toss into my kit. Speaking of my kit …

 

Try to find a dark coloured pouch so it’ll blend in with your backstage black clothing. I know; black clothing, pouch and shoes mean that you may become almost invisible – good for the production, but difficult for performers to find you and, your invisibility may help bring about backstage collisions …

Trust me, the size of one’s pouch does become an issue depending on the job at hand; a film costumer may need to carry a sewing kit, plus some break down gear on their person, while a stage dresser may only require a small sewing kit and space for the performers’ water bottle. Be careful that you don’t overload yourself with gear, at the risk of being unable to move with ease.

Remember the First Rule?

Safety First; the first rule of work. Stage and Film work is accomplished in specialized working spaces that include humans working alone or working closely with other humans, and humans working closely with machines and moving systems; often all at once.

Certain kinds of work require mandatory safety equipment but to   save general wear and tear on yourself, treat yourself to gloves or padding that helps avoid those common workplace knicks, scratches, bruises and cuts.

 

Safety knowledge is important and powerful on the jobsite; so, let’s head over to the power tools …

Of course, most jobsites have power cords and lights, but I carry stand lights and extension cords as part of my film kit; in case there is little time to request it from locations. Make sure you mark any lights and wrap the cords with a colour of tape or texture that is easily identified as being yours, or, at least, marked Wardrobe.

Moving on, to a few additions to my breakdown kit …

It seems I go through rubber gloves like mad; sanding blocks and brushes often need replacing.

And it all needs a storage systems …

At the studio, we store our ribbon, elastic, twill tape and fancy trim in opaque bins so we can find it easily …

One more tour around the aisles for anything useful for the studio sewing space …

Carpenter’s chalk may be slightly more course than the fine dressmakers’ chalk, but periodic shaking of your chalk wheel easily accommodates for that. Oh, and don’t forget those Flat washers …

Eye Candy

 

Even if all else fails; no cool bits on sale or fancy tools on sale, I could always come away with a collection of different bolts, drill bits and fasteners for another purpose entirely …

Quite a shopping spree at the hardware store; costumers can take quite a haul away from this store that usually doesn’t appear to be costumer-pleasing … 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The Costumer's Notebook,

The book The Costumer's Notebook is a 295 page comprehensive handbook for Costumers for stage and film including a full Glossary of stage and film industry terms. Sections include methods and tricks for laundry, dyeing, breakdown, Dresser guidelines and protocols for Stage or Film and various size charts for men and women from shoes to gloves. Other Sections include diagrams showing How to Iron A Shirt, How to Tie a Tie and How to Tie a Bow Tie. Costume fittings, costume lay out and costume storage are also discussed.