LOS ANGELES -- How does costume design help tell a story?
This is the 13th year for the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising’s “The Art of TV Costume Design” exhibition in DTLA. The exhibition, which features the designs from five Emmy-nominated shows, is a great way for fans to connect with their favorite programs and for students like Devert Monet-Hickman, who is studying costume design at FIDM, it's a great learning tool.
“When I was a kid I used to hang curtains on the ceiling and tell everyone in my family, ‘10 minutes to places! There's going to be a show!’ and they would all come and watch,” said Monet-Hickman. “I always knew I was going to be in some aspect of the theater world.”
Monet-Hickman just won a $10,000 scholarship from the Black Design Collective, an organization that encourages the development of African-American designers.
“[The award] happened to be going toward the theater and costume program this year,” explained Monet-Hickman. “It was presented to me by Ruth Carter, which was really amazing. She just won the Oscar for best custom design for Black Panther.”
FIDM’s Costume Design Program has no equal here in L.A. according to the school’s Chair of Fashion Design and Costume Design Exhibition Spokesperson, Nick Verreos. He said the exhibition reminds students of the high bar that Hollywood sets for the industry.
“We are in Los Angeles, Hollywood, the capital of entertainment, of course. So we all know that it's very important and we have all the top echelons of all those fields right here. That's why we think it's perfect to have such an exhibition here,” said Verreos.
The Emmy-nominated costumes on display run the gamut from Game of Thrones to The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel and even designs from FIDM alumna Marina Toybina for her work on The Masked Singer. Verreos points out that Game of Thrones is a perfect example for the way in which costuming can help tell a story.
“What do the little trickles of the red fur coming down the coat kind of give you a hint of?” Verreos asked, pointing at one of the Game of Thrones gowns. “It was supposed to give the viewers the signal that this isn't going to end well.”
Back in the workshop, Monet-Hickman toils on mockups of his latest designs. He knows he's only at the beginning of his costuming journey but feels he has also come a long way at FIDM.
“Just to look back to when I first came in to FIDM, it’s spellbinding to me the leaps and bounds that I've made since then.”
And while being in Hollywood surrounded by the best in the industry might be daunting, Monet-Hickman says it is also a great privilege.