Costume queen, gin queen, drama queen

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December 28, 2012 by thepolishedbutton

So I thought I should probably tell you a bit about me – an online cv if you will.
I trained as a theatre designer, and spent a few years hawking my trade as a costume designer, wardrobe assistant, costume supervisor, general queen of the sequin…this gave me a good basis in all things sewing related, project management of highly strung divas actors and the ability to rustle up a convincing Victorian bustle out of bubble wrap and handkerchiefs. (The last bit may not strictly be true, but it’s not too far off…)
I then went on to manage a vintage clothes shop, while studying part time for a masters degree in fashion. The opportunity arose to set up my own costume hire business, so it was bye bye MA and hello young entrepeneur of the year (or something…) and my business baby was born. For 5 years I loved and adored all 12000 of my costumes – everything from spacemen to vintage Dior to a suit worn by Kenneth Branagh. I loved it, even if the warehouse got so cold in the winter I could see my breath and the discovery of a family of mice living in the kitchen made me a nervous wreck for a week. (the rentokill man suggested a sticky pad on my desk to catch them, but the idea of finding a half dead mouse stuck to my keyboard, gnawing it’s own leg off to escape was even worse than finding the droppings – what the hell would I have done with it then? I’m not a natural mouse killer so I would have ended up leaving the poor thing to die a slow death round the back of the industrial estate…)
Anyway, the onset of a bun in the oven, the joyous double dip recession and a change in the working relationship with the theatre who were involved in the business, meant the natural end was in sight, so it was on to pastures new.
I went on to spend a lovely couple of years lecturing in the fine art of costume to enthusiastic and eager (and terribly dramatic) drama students, until the powers that be did a reshuffle *sob*.
So that brings us to now. Mum to a frantic and fabulous 2 year old, wife to a hard working tv editor and part time worker in a vintage clothes shop. Without going into the semantics of going from running my own business to academia to part time shop work (I’m trying hard not to be bitter and not to turn in to one of those hideous ‘do you know what I used to do?’ kind of people – the shop and staff are lovely!) it’s definitely time to take control of my future and get back to working for myself.
So here we are. In the words of Dolly, working 9-5 – what a way to earn a living. Not for me, so I’m hoping 2013 will bring fun and surprises and challenges and maybe some money too. Please buy some buttons…and ribbon…and other pretty things in my etsy shop 😉

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