The costume designers in the spring production of Cinderella, including seniors Aria Margulies, Grace Schneider and Jewel Thompson, worked hard behind the scenes. Their expertise in sewing and costume design reaches far beyond the theatrical stage, however.
According to Thompson, the seniors’ interests in costume design and piecing together outfits sparked during sophomore year when the three made costumes in honor of the Avengers for fun.
As part of this year’s costume design team, Margulies, Schneider and Thompson converted donated prom dresses into Victorian-style ball gowns to fit the setting of Cinderella. The process of making each gown for the play began with a base fabric before being fit to a model. After envisioning a unique design for the costume, costume designers sewed on different fabrics to alter the style of the dresses. The final step in the process of costume design involved adding embellishments such as ribbons and bows.
Thompson discovered her interest in fashion and clothing design while baking a cake. She wanted to design an outfit for a character that would serve as a cake-topper, inspiring Thompson’s love for fashion design that she continues to pursue as a hobby. Currently, Thompson most enjoys making skirts and using bold color schemes in her design patterns.
Margulies, who served as assis- tant designer for Cinderella, has always loved princess-style dresses. Although she described her first attempt at sewing as terrible, Margulies improved by making countless different items, including her own dress for the CHS Snowball dance. She spends her time working on different sewing projects, especially historical costuming. Currently, Margulies most enjoys making corsets.
Cinderella marks Margulies’ fourth production working with costume design at CHS. While she’s had experience working for the costume department before, Margulies hadn’t ever tackled a project this big.
Margulies was tasked with designing a dress that would transform from a drab servants’ dress into a beautiful dress, fit for a ball.
“Cinderella’s dress is the biggest thing I’ve ever worked on since it’s going to transform on stage,” said Margulies.
For it to work, Margulies had to create patterns derived from ideas put together from a myriad of instructional youtube videos.
Schneider learned how to sew at a young age, around the same time she learned to do other household tasks such as cooking. Since then, she continued to sew and contributed her talents and knowledge to help out with Carrboro theater productions. Schneider helped with more than just sewing for Cinderella by picking out materials that go into other costumes, like the horses’ heads.
“It’s something I enjoy doing,” said Schneider about costuming.
All three CHS seniors plan to pursue their love for sewing and costume design after high school, either as a career or a hobby.