In January and February of 2007, I designed costumes for The Silent Caller, a senior thesis play written by William Havemann '07. I did research on the sort of clothing each character would wear, designed costumes, then shopped for variations of those costumes. This play, set in present day Connecticut, centers around the impact on a family when the father has a mysterious "fall" that leaves him in a possibly permanent coma. Characters include a laid-back college student, a geeky high school teacher, and a visiting girl who "isn't from around here." One of the design challenges of this play was to design one costume that was representative of each character, as the many fast scene shifts made multiple costumes impractical.
Much of my research consisted of collecting images of the sort of clothing characters would wear, according to their age, job, personality, and financial situation. Click on images to view larger versions.
Catherine, the mother, is a put-together patent lawyer. She has everything under control...except, perhaps, her rapidly deteriorating family.
Some key research for Catherine:
Chris, the son, is a senior in college. He does not pay any attention to "fashion," prefering to throw on a comfortable shirt and jeans.
Emily, the daughter, is a 16-year-old high school student. During the course of the play, she is suffering from depression over her father's accident. I designed Emily's costume to reflect her age and to be easily convertable from an outfit she could wear while lounging around the house to an outfit for going out to dinner.
Natalie is a girl from out of town who comes to live with the family. Natalie is a bit of an enigma, and needed to seem clearly from a different place from the others her age.
Some key research images for Natalie:
All production photos were taken by Samuel Masinter.