Academic Catalog


Foothill College Course Outline of Record

Foothill College Course Outline of Record
Heading Value
Effective Term: Summer 2021
Units: 4
Hours: 3 lecture, 3 laboratory per week (72 total per quarter)
Advisory: Not open to students with credit in THTR 75.
Degree & Credit Status: Degree-Applicable Credit Course
Foothill GE: Non-GE
Transferable: CSU/UC
Grade Type: Letter Grade (Request for Pass/No Pass)
Repeatability: Not Repeatable

Student Learning Outcomes

  • Successful students can demonstrate sewing skills through the use of the sewing machine and a variety of hand stitches.
  • Successful students can identify and produce a variety of craft applications used in costume preparation, including millinery/hat making, shoe modification, and accessory making.
  • Upon completion, students can operate specialty equipment for costume preparation, including the overlock, blind hemmer, steam iron, garment steamer and pattern drafting tools.
  • Successful students recognize and use the costume process to prepare the costumes for a theatrical production.


An introduction to sewing techniques, pattern cutting, costume room equipment and the design and fabrication of clothing and costumes for the theatre and stage.

Course Objectives

The student will be able to:
A. Research, classify and identify costume styles and periods for the theatre and stage.
B. Understand the practical elements of producing costumes for a show, including creating costumes for the stage.
C. Identify fabric weaves, fibers, fabric names and uses.
D. Analyze and practice with the techniques of costume construction for the stage.
E. Develop techniques of pattern cutting, layout and sizing of patterns and clothing for costumes on the stage.
F. Interpret sketches and renderings of costume designs for theatrical productions, and understand the techniques used to create costumes for various regions and in different cultures.
G. Understand the organization elements in creating costumes for production.

Course Content

A. Research and analyze clothing for particular periods in history and the relationship to the theatre, stage and script.
B. Introduce fabric basics, distinguishing differences in fabric weaves and fibers; identify fabric names and their sewing properties and practical usage.
C. Practice techniques of cutting, sewing, craftmaking (including textiles and millinery), and building and finishing the costume design using sewing machines, scissors, needles, threads, steaming and ironing equipment.
D. Draft costume patterns for the stage by using paper, tape, tape measures, and muslin.
E. Analyze the use of line, texture, color and form in the creation of costume design in American, European, Hispanic, African and/or Eastern/Asian theatrical societies.
F. Evaluate costs and budgeting for costumes in the theatre.

Lab Content

A. Supervised construction of related projects, including costume alterations, cutting and creating new costume garments and accessories.
B. Craft projects include millinery and thermoplastic accessory fabrication with some advanced techniques touching on corsetry boning or tailoring specific stitching.

Special Facilities and/or Equipment

A. Studio facilities with access to sewing machines and tables, overlock, blind hemmer, industrial iron and table, steamer, and costume shop.
B. Space appropriate for storing class materials and projects.
C. Space appropriate for storing show costumes.

Method(s) of Evaluation

Methods of Evaluation may include but are not limited to the following:

In-class projects
Assigned construction exercises
Project review
Final exam project/paper

Method(s) of Instruction

Methods of Instruction may include but are not limited to the following:

Lecture presentations and classroom discussion covering costume research, technology and construction
Oral presentations of major projects followed by in-class discussion and evaluation
Instructor guided laboratory practice sessions
Instructor demonstrations of costume technology and techniques

Representative Text(s) and Other Materials

Cunningham, Rebecca. Basic Sewing for Costume Construction: A Handbook, 2nd ed.. 2011.

Ingham, Rosemary, and Liz Covey. Costume Technicians Handbook, 3rd ed.. 2003.

Although these texts are older than the suggested "5 years or newer" standard, they remain seminal texts in this area of study. The Ingham and Covey text is the current school standard; sewing techniques do not change much, and its research and shopping sections are updated yearly online to keep relevant.

Types and/or Examples of Required Reading, Writing, and Outside of Class Assignments

A. Reading assignments include chapters from the textbook as well as research assignments that include verbal and visual research.
B. Students complete a paper that outlines the techniques they have learned in class.


Stagecraft OR Theater Arts