Costumes communicate the story and help actors transform into the new and believable.
"As an industry professional, I have been able to hone my design skills, develop advanced costume patterning and construction techniques, focus on fabric manipulation through dyeing and painting processes and have worked for several amazing companies that have high production values and encourage their artists to excel in the field. The collaborative process excites me and I enjoy sharing my knowledge. I have presented workshops and master classes across the country and at international and national events as well as universities. These classes have been designed for both the novice technician and the advanced student. I am embracing the 'new normal' and reworking my workshops and adding video modules to supplement the content to offer additional learning styles."
Summary of Skills
Award-Winning Costume Design and Construction
Flat Pattern Drafting
Proficient in Dance Wear Patterning Techniques
Extensive Costume Crafts Experience
Fabric Painting and Dyeing
Ability to Meet Deadlines
Works Well Under Pressure
Strong Communication Skills
Demonstrated Organizational and Budgeting Skills
Accomplished Project Manager
Proven Ability to Develop Class Content
Costume Cutter/Draper, Childsplay, Tempe, AZ 2013- present. Responsible for creating patterns, cutting and assembling garments, performing fittings as required, altering both ready to wear and stock garments for end use on stage based on the designer ’s renderings. Supervise over hire stitchers as needed. Work with the shop manager to source specialty build items and anticipate needs of the build in a timely manner.
Owner, Rukshana Raks!, Tempe, AZ 2008-present. Rukshana Raks! offers custom dance costumes, alterations, costume refurbishment and workshops in both oriental fusion dance and costume construction techniques. The in-person construction workshop offerings are currently being reformatted (handouts are being revised and supplementary video modules are being developed to accommodate teaching in a virtual format).
Resident Costume Designer, Stageworks (formerly Mesa Youtheatre), Mesa, AZ, 2003 – 2010. Responsible for developing designs, providing renderings/ working sketches for costume construction, procuring all supplies and materials required for designs to be realized while maintaining a balanced budget for each production. Additional duties included hiring and supervising allover hire staff (between 2 and 6 people per show), distributing projects based on skill level of workers, patterning/cutting and stitching as needed, producing all specialty craft work, conducting all fittings, providing wardrobe support paperwork for the run crew and additional training on how to best facilitate fast changes and maintain costumes. Consulted by the production manager and artistic director during the building of the Mesa Arts Center on the set up and equipping of the costume shop space, generated notions orders and organized the new costume storage facility.
Draper, Specialty Craft Work, Milliner, Dyer/Painter, Tutu Etoile, Scottsdale and Tucson, AZ (over hire as needed August 1999 to present). Responsible for patterning, cutting and constructing classical, fantasy, and modern dance wear and accessories.
Dyer/Painter, Senior Crafts Technician, Utah Shakespearean Festival, 1998 – 2019 seasons.
Responsible for all costume dye and paint work involved in the production process for 6 main stage shows and three green shows. Skilled in the use of union and fiber reactive dyes, textile paints, distressing (mechanical and applied), specialty fabric treatments and silk screening techniques.
Presenter, Fun with Fosshape and WonderFlex, Costume-Con 36, San Diego, CA, May 2018.
Demonstrated Fosshape and WonderFlex in a variety of costume and prop applications. Examples were provided of works in process and finished costume pieces/props. Participants were encouraged to work with the products during the session and to explore applications within their own cosplay needs. The workshop was sponsored by WonderFlex World.
Presenter, Master Class, Costume Distressing, Mesa Community College, Spring 2017.
Developed and presented a 6 hour workshop on the techniques commonly used in costume aging and distressing. The second half of the class focused on the use of the airbrush and the students were provided time to work with the airbrush. The students were provided with a detailed handout and created samples of the processes covered.
Presenter, Master Class, Airbrush, Mesa Community College, Fall 2016.
Developed and presented a single day hands on workshop on the use and maintenance of the airbrush as it related to theatrical makeup.
Costume Crafts Artisan (temporary emergency hire), Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ, Spring 2014. Responsible for assigning student projects, mentoring them through the show build, and developing the build process for large cardboard specialty costume pieces. Worked closely with the student designer to create a finished product that was both true to the design aesthetic and functional for the actors.
Presenter, Costume Distressing Master Class, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ, January 2012.
Developed and presented a two-part workshop on the techniques commonly used in costume aging and distressing. The students were provided with a detailed handout and created samples of the processes covered.
Presenter, Screen Printing Workshop, USITT Desert States Region, Northern Arizona University,
Flagstaff, Arizona, August 2008. Developed and presented a four hour workshop covering the creation of custom silk screens.
Presenter, Professional Development Workshop in Costume Distressing, USITT National Conference, 2007, Phoenix, AZ. Developed and presented an eight-hour workshop geared towards the theatre professional on costume distressing techniques with a focus on the use of the airbrush.
Instructor, Fiber Arts Workshops, Arts Studio Classes at the Mesa Arts Center, Mesa, AZ, 2007-2009.
Developed and presented various workshops on fabric modification techniques and construction processes geared towards the beginning student. Topics included: low water immersion dyeing with fiber reactive dyes, silk painting, silk screening and cabaret belly dance bra and belt construction.
Presenter, Dye/Paint Symposium, USITT Desert States Region, University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona, August 2005. Developed and presented a two-day workshop for attendees on airbrush techniques, garment aging and general distressing techniques.
Presenter, Dye/Paint Master Class, University of Mississippi, Oxford Mississippi, April 2005.
Developed and presented a two-day workshop for students on fiber reactive dyeing techniques and garment distressing.
Resident Costume Designer, Phoenix Theatre, Phoenix Arizona 2003-2004 Resident Costume Designer, Phoenix Theatre Cookie Company, Phoenix, Arizona
(1995-1997). Responsible for providing designs, renderings and working sketches for costume construction, included but not limited to costing out of designs, purchasing materials, maintaining and balancing budgets, development/selection of patterns, fabrics, trims, accessories and any costume prop pieces. Selected build duties included all patterning, cutting, specialized craft applications and paint/dye work.
Costume Production Staff/Wardrobe Assistant, Ballet Arizona, Phoenix, Arizona 1995-1999.
Assisted supervisor with all aspects of costume production, wardrobe maintenance and worked backstage during productions. Extensive draping, costume crafts and paint/dye responsibilities.
Costume Shop Staff, Galvin Costume Shop, Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona 1991-1994. Graduate Assistantship, Fall1992-Fall 1994. Selected production assignments included assistant costume designer, draper, tailor, crafts artisan and stitcher.
Executive Trainee, Area Sales Manager and Assistant Buyer Positions, Dillards Department Stores, Phoenix, AZ 1988-1991. Attended Dillard’s Executive Trainee program. The program included classes on management styles, prioritizing objectives, human resource policy and procedures, interview techniques, how to calculate open to
buy, evaluate sales and profitability. Trainees were assigned to shadow a buyer as part of the program.
As an Area Sales Manager, responsibilities included interviewing, hiring and training staff, tracking incoming inventory, effectively merchandising stock, meeting or exceeding departmental sales goals, working with the buying office to create the ideal merchandise mix for customer demographic, coordinating vendor trunk shows and developing repeat business. As an Assistant Buyer duties included analyzing sales trends, generating detailed weekly sales reports, communicating with suppliers to insure on time delivery of merchandise, placing and tracking customer special orders, working with buyer to generate and place merchandise orders based on store performance and customer demographic, attending product presentations/buying meetings and analyzing reports with the buyers to determine the financial health of the area. As a result of these duties, extensive management and budgeting skills were achieved. At the time of resignation I was responsible for an eight million dollar business.
MFA, Scenography, Costume Focus, Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona, 1994
BS, Family Resources and Human Development, Clothing and Textiles, Liberal Arts, Arizona State University,
Tempe, Arizona, 1987
United States Institute for Theatre Technology (USITT), Desert States Section, Director at Large, 2007-2011. USITT is a membership organization which aims to advance the skills and knowledge of theatre, entertainment and performing arts professionals involved in the areas of design, production and technology, and to generally promote their interests. To this end, the USITT mounts conferences and exhibitions, promulgates awards and publications, and supports research. USITT is a non-profit organization.
Middle Eastern Culture and Dance Association (MECDA), Levant al Sonora, Arizona Chapter, Secretary January 2012- April 2014. Created in 1977, MECDA was a non-profit organization dedicated to serving the community as a source of education, communication, promotion, and inspiration for the near and middle east music, dance, and its arts community worldwide. Levant al Sonora presented one major dance festival every year as well as mini workshops and salons for the dance community in Arizona. MECDA dissolved in April 2014.
2018 Best in Show Workmanship, Historical Masquerade. CostumeCon 36, Heavenly Bodies: The Reliquary, San Diego, CA
2018 Best in Class Presentation, Historical Masquerade CostumeCon36, Heavenly Bodies: The Reliquary, San Diego, CA
2018 Best in Show, SF Masquerade CostumeCon 36, Through the Looking Glass, San Diego, CA
2014 Best in Show Workmanship, SF Masquerade CostumeCon 32, Steampunk Circus, Toronto, OT, Canada
2014 Best in Show Overall, SF Masquerade CostumeCon 32, Steampunk Circus, Toronto, OT, Canada
2010 Best in Class, Historical Masquerade CostumeCon 28, Lost Luggage Milwaukee,Wisconsin
2009 Best in Show Presentation, SF Masquerade CostumeCon 27, Destination Libation Baltimore, Maryland
2009 Best in Show Steampunk, SF Masquerade CostumeCon 27, Destination Libation Baltimore, Maryland
1994 Best in Show, Historical Masquerade, CostumeCon 12, Masque du Roi, Santa Rosa, CA
2006 ariZony Award of Excellence, Costume Design, Sword in the Stone, Phoenix Theatre Cookie Company
2005 ariZony Award of Excellence, Costume Design, Girl Who Saved the Sun, Phoenix Theatre Cookie Company
2003 ariZony Award of Excellence, Costume Design, The Quiltmaker's Gift, Phoenix Theatre Cookie Company
2002 ariZony Award of Excellence, Costume Design, The Emperor's New Clothes, Phoenix Theatre Cookie Company
2001 ariZony Award of Excellence, Costume Design, Children of Eden, Phoenix Theatre
2000 ariZony Award of Excellence, Costume Design, Sleeping Beauty, Phoenix Theatre Cookie Company
1996 ariZony Award of Excellence, Costume Design Hansel and Gretel, Phoenix Theatre, Cookie Company
2019 Snowy Day and Other Stories , Childsplay (national tour), Katie McFadzen, director
2017 Snowy Day and Other Stories , Childsplay, Katie McFadzen, director
2017 Interrupting Vanessa, Childsplay, Debra K. Stevens, director
2016 Twist Your Dickens, Phoenix Theatre, Matthew Weiner, director
2015 Smartest Girl in the World , Childsplay, Debra K. Stevens, director
2014 Shear Madness, Phoenix Theatre, Robert Kolby Harper, director
2012 The Quiltmaker’s Gift, Phoenix Theatre Cookie Company, Robert Kolby Harper
2010 Noises Off, Phoenix Theatre, Matthew Weiner, director
2010 Gypsy, Arizona Broadway Theatre, Kiel Klaphake, director
2010 Fools, Arizona Jewish Theatre Company, Ben Tyler, director
2009 The Emperor’s New Clothes, Stageworks, Jennifer Akridge, director
2009 How the Other Half Loves, Phoenix Theatre, Jere Hodgin, director
2008 Kindertransport, Arizona Jewish Theatre Company, Janet Arnold, director
2008 Ferdinand the Bull, Stageworks, Jennifer Akridge, director
2008 Almost Maine, Phoenix Theatre, Dwayne Hartford, director
2007 Little Shop of Horrors, Arizona Broadway Theatre, Joseph Martinez, director
2007 Leading Ladies, Phoenix Theatre, Brad Carroll, director
2006 South Pacific, Arizona Broadway Theatre, Joseph Martinez, director
2006 Vilna’s Got a Golem, Arizona Jewish Theatre Company, Dan Schay, director
2006 Sarah, Plain and Tall, Stageworks, Don Doyle, director
2006 Waking Up in Lost Hills, Arizona State University, Pamela Sterling, director
2006 Two, Arizona Jewish Theatre, Kayla Gordon, director
2005 Picnic, Phoenix Theatre, Karla Koskinen, director
2005 A Midsummer-Night’s Dream, Southwest Shakespeare, Jared Sakren, director
2005 The Girl Who Saved the Sun, Phoenix Theatre Cookie Company, Gregory Jaye, director
2004 The Price, Arizona Jewish Theatre Company, Wanda McHatton, director
2004 You Can’t Take It With You, Phoenix Theatre, Graham Whitehead, director
2004 Treasure Island, Phoenix Theatre Cookie Company, Gene Ganssele, director
2004 Swing!, Phoenix Theatre, Robert Kolby Harper
2003 Shmulnick’s Waltz, Arizona Jewish Theatre Company, Claude File, director
2003 Chicago, Phoenix Theatre, Michael Barnard, director
2003 The Tale of the Mandarin Duck, Mesa Youtheatre, Jennifer Akridge, director
2003 Beauty and the Beast, Phoenix Theatre Cookie Company, Rober Kolby Harper, director
2002 The Quiltmaker’s Gift, Phoenix Theatre Cookie Company, Michael Barnard, director
2002 Ramona, Arizona State University, David Vining, director
2002 Something’s Afoot,Phoenix Theatre, Kathleen Conroy, director
2002 El Jinette Sin Cabesa, Mesa Youtheatre, Jennifer Akridge, director
2002 My Way, Phoenix Theatre, Paul Barnes, director
2002 Amadeus, Phoenix Theatre, Phillip John Taylor, director
2002 Rumors, Phoenix Theatre, Graham Whitehead, director
2001 Alexander’s Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, Mesa Youtheatre, Jennifer Akridge, director
2001 Driving Miss Daisy, Phoenix Theatre, Graham Whitehead, director
2001 The Emperor’s New Clothes, Phoenix Theatre Cookie Company, Alan J. Prewitt, director
2001 Princess and the Pea, Phoenix Theatre Cookie Company, Alan J. Prewitt, director
2001 The Comedy of Errors, Phoenix Theatre, Graham Whitehead, director
2000 Children of Eden, Phoenix Theatre, Michael Barnard, director
2000 Arsenic and Old Lace, Phoenix Theatre, Victoria Halloway, director
2000 Sleeping Beauty, Phoenix Theatre Cookie Company, Alan J. Prewitt, director
2000 Parallel Lives: the Kathy and Mo Show, Actor's Theatre of Phoenix, Kirk Jackson, director
2000 Tintypes, Phoenix Theatre, Michael Barnard, director
2000 Beauty and the Beast, Ballet Jude, T.J. Maheras, choreographer
1999 Uh-Oh, Here Comes Christmas, Phoenix Theatre, Ernie Zula, director
1999 Heidi, Phoenix Theatre Cookie Company, Ann Tully, director
1999 Golf with Alan Shepard, Phoenix Theatre, Michael Mitchell, director
1999 Never the Sinner, Phoenix Theatre, Michael Bardard, director
1998 Mother Goose on the Loose, Phoenix Theatre Cookie Company, James Zager, Director
1996 Hansel and Gretel, Phoenix Theatre Cookie Company, Alan J. Prewitt, director
1995 Beauty and the Beast, Phoenix Theatre Cookie Company, Gene Ganssle, director
1994 The Taming of the Shrew, Arizona State University, Jared Sakren, director
Actors Theatre of Phoenix was a professional resident theater company founded in 1985 by performing artists from the Phoenix area. The company produced five productions a year in the Herberger Theater Center. Under the direction of Producing Director Matthew Wiener, Actors Theatre focused on the foremost contemporary playwrights, featuring predominantly local actors. They closed in 2014.
Arizona Broadway Theatre features professional Broadway productions with restaurant style dining. Their mission is to enrich lives through the power of the performing arts by producing live theatre and other high quality entertainment.
Arizona Jewish Theatre Company operated in Phoenix from 1988 until 2012. One of only five Equity companies in the Valley, AJTC was able to attract the top designers and technicians in the area, and the productions were recognized as high quality theatre. Operating under a Small Professional Theatre contract with Actors Equity, allowed us to hire the most talented professional actors available. Over 24 years more than 80 adult shows were produced and most of them Arizona premieres, including some world premieres.
Childsplay: Childsplay's mission is to create theatre so strikingly original in form, content or both, that it instills in young people an enduring awe, love and respect for the medium, thus preserving imagination and wonder, those hallmarks of childhood which are the keys to the future. This company has an excellent reputation both nationally and internationally.
Phoenix Theatre is the oldest arts organization in Arizona and remains one of the oldest in the country. It has a mission of creating “dynamic, professional productions while educating and elevating the growing Phoenix artistic and cultural community. Phoenix Theatre also has a mandate to create new work, specifically musicals.. I designed the world premiere of The Quitmaker’s Gift for this organization. Cookie Company was the theatre for young audiences division of Phoenix Theatre.
Southwest Shakespeare Company opens doors by exploring the intricacies of language through the vibrant and passionate performance of works of classical theatre. They exist to elevate, entertain, educate and inspire the general public and educational communities of Arizona and the southwest.
Stageworks, formerly known as Mesa Youtheatre, was a community theatre for young audiences and their families, from 1979 through 2008. Stageworks' mission was to inspire and instill a love of theatre in people of all ages. It produced plays that embrace the youthful spirit and awaken the child in all of us. Using students and adults in
acting roles, the plays celebrate young people and their life journey. Stageworks’ productions were designed, written and directed by theatre professionals.
The ariZoni Theatre Awards of Excellence promote the visibility, cooperation, and growth of theatre in the Valley and are dedicated to recognizing excellence in theatrical performances, as well as individuals who produce exceptional work in all aspects of theatre.
Costume-Con is an international traveling convention dedicated to the art and craft of costumes and costuming of all types. It features classes, displays, a fashion show, masquerades and other competitions. It is a 4-day conference devoted to costumes/cosplay from anime, comics, fantasy, sci-fi, fursuits, historical, theatrical/TV/film, millinery, accessories and more.