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)
Prerequisite: THTR 25.
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 classify and identify costume styles and periods for the theatre.
  • Successful students can demonstrate intermediate sewing skills with a wide range of fabrics and equipment, including overlock and blind hemmer machines.
  • Successful students can demonstrate techniques of pattern adjustments of an existing pattern, as well as drafting and fitting a custom body block.
  • Successful students can organize elements in creating costumes for production, including analyzing a script, creating a costume plot and production schedule, and evaluating costs and budgeting.


Continuation of THTR 25 with an exploration into more complex sewing techniques and machinery use. Further practice in the fabrication of clothing and costumes for the theatre, including pattern adjustment and measuring, basic pattern making, sewing knits, advanced fitting and alteration techniques and specialty machine usage.

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 and performing intricate clothing alterations.
C. Identify fabric weaves, fibers, fabric names and uses and their particular sewing properties.
D. Practice with the skills of costume construction for the stage using various techniques and machinery.
E. Develop techniques of pattern adjustments of an existing pattern, including different sizing and changing its style details.
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. Practice 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. Practice body measuring, pulling costumes, fitting, garment measuring, garment alterations, show maintenance and laundering theatrical costumes. Learn intricate clothing alterations.
C. Study a wide range of fabrics, distinguishing differences in fabric weaves and fibers. Identify fabric names and their sewing properties and practical usage. Practice sewing knits on the overlock and blind hemmer.
D. 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. Learn and practice the usage of the overlock and blind hemmer machines.
E. Draft a custom body block and fit it.
F. 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.
G. Analyze a script, create a costume plot and evaluate costs and budgeting for costumes in the theatre.

Lab Content

A. Supervised construction of related projects including racking a show and pulling existing garments, creating new garments and accessories and maintaining a show during its run.
B. Advanced projects include millinery and thermoplastic fabrication and advanced structuring such as tailoring and corsetry.

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 this class.


Stagecraft or Theater Arts