Design Portfolio

Abandoned Way Out West-The KID Show

Costume Design

Out of respect for the minors involved, please contact Elly for her full portfolio to see photos of this show

Abandoned Way Out West was Creede Repertory Theatre’s 2018 KID show, a program that brings theatre education to local and often underprivileged children 9-18 in rural Colorado. 16 children, some actors, some technicians, in the program did a three week workshop of the show alongside professional mentors, designers, and directors. Our Writer/Director Diana Burbano sought to fit the season’s theme of “strong female leads” with the story of a 12 year old Vaquera, Aquilina, leading a band of rag-tag orphans in the wild west against the greedy back star gang and their plot to steal the town from the children. As a design team, we strove to create a world believably created by children, and brought in lots of the kids to help with different projects, like distressing their costumes. Many of the costumes featured whimsical, child-like details like leather patches on bows or outward facing suspender buttons, and re purposed materials such as bandannas made into bows or aprons made from old chaps and serapes. As Creede is an extremely rural and secluded town with only three roads, sourcing materials was a unique challenge, but created a wonderful opportunity to research and respect the backgrounds of the children participating. We strove as a design team to reflect and honor both the history of the area, and the cultural backgrounds of the children coming to us for the show. This included pulling inspiration from child miners, railroad working families, pioneers, prospectors, vaqueros and the Colorado school for the deaf. We saw these characters as a group of lost boys in the wild west, without need of grown ups to successfully work together to run a town. It was also important to us to instill collaborative values in the kids, so some of the participants had the opportunity to make choices with me about what their costumes would look like and how their character would dress(i.e. are the dog/cat characters actual animals, or children playing pretend-they went with playing pretend!). I was also responsible for making sure everyone was in costume for the Fourth of July Parade in town, as Abandoned Way Out West was the theme of the float!

Scenic Design- Dustin Belich

Lighting Design- Harry Foster

Show Photographs- John Gary Brown

The Watsons Go To Birmingham-1963

Assistant Costume Design

Costume Design By Izumi Inaba

The Watsons Go To Birmingham- 1963 is a stage adaptation of a book of the same name, about a 9 year old boy named Kenny, who’s family takes a road trip to take their misbehaving son Byron to stay with his Grandmother in Birmingham for the summer. Kenny finds more than he bargained for in Birmingham, where tensions of the civil rights movement are boiling. I assisted costume designer Izumi Inaba on this show, and my responsibilities included helping build paperwork, taking notes, assisting with fittings and alterations, as well as coordinating the press photo shoot costumes. Our focuses on this show included creating a “Whol Pooh” monster(a whirlpool that almost drowns Kenny), Making Kenny’s Glasses Breakable, and staying true to the silhouettes and styles of the 60s while making quick changes easy for the characters. I pulled our photo shoot costumes from the stock at the theatre and aimed to find costumes that were similar to the designs, although not exact. I also engineered the Whol Pooh hood to stay in place so the actor could see, helped build the vest that holds “water” fabric(as a collaboration with props), and built a bandanna doorag for the oldest brother.

Scenic Design- Arnel Sancianco

Props Design-Mealah Heidenreich

Lighting Design- Jason Lynch

Projections Design- Smooch Medina

Show Photographs Courtesy of Chicago Children’s Theatre

Red Bowl at the Jeffs

Costume Design

The Sound’s Red Bowl at the Jeffs is writer Beth Hyland’s insider nod to Chicago theatre, loosely based on Chekov’’s Three Sisters. When Red Bowl Theatre company is nominated for best ensemble at the non-equity Jeff awards, they’re elated, but since closing, the company’s lives have begun to mirror the story of Three Sisters a little too closely for comfort. As these young but maturing artists grapple with disappointment and how to define success in a difficult industry, we as artists are presented with the question: why are we even doing this? As a design team, we wanted to honor the countless real small start up theatre companies in the area (one of which put on this show!) and my design strove to show a cross section of the way Chicago theatre artists present themselves when offstage, honor the inspiration of Three Sisters, as well as fulfill some script specific requirements, like a white free people dress that could handle a nightly wine dousing, a stylish cape, a bolo tie and more, all while working on a shoe string budget.

Scenic Design- Dana Macel

Lighting Design- Alex Beal

Director- Rebecca Willingham

Photographs- Montana Bruns

The Complete Works Of William Shakespeare, Abridged

Costume Design

For this production of The Complete works of William Shakespeare, Abridged, we wanted to take the three characters and give them a rock and roll edge and combine it with the wacky, slapstick comedy of the show. I used a lot of leather and autumn colors for the main costumes, and gave each main character a modern outfit with a renaissance style piece to add on one they entered the storytelling portion of the show. Each of the characters they portray in all of Shakespeare's plays had accessories, simple pieces, or wigs to differentiate them.

Scenic Design- Tony Curtis

Lighting Design- Kyle Harris

Director- Melanie Mason

Photographs courtesy of Theatre Arlington

Helios 24/7

Costume Design

Helios 24/7 is a story set in the near future that explores the intertwining roles of sleep, technology, and art in our lives and relationships. As a design team, we decided to set the story in the near future, to help drive home the theme of keeping real experiences and relationships in our increasingly technological lives. We drew heavy influence from modern sci-fi shows and movies as well as some abstract and absurd art inspiration from artists like Salvador Dali. I also drew on inspiration from Japanese futuristic fashion trends, with bold lines and sleek textures.. As this play involved certain scenes playing out on set-mounted TVs, there was an element of costume design for film for this production as well. 

Scenic Design- DJ Badon

Lighting Design- Jared Land

Director- Dr. Natalie Gaupp

Photographs- Michelle Harvey and Laurie Land

Waiting For Forty

Costume Design

Waiting for 40 was a one-act romantic comedy performed in rep with three other shows. The Director wanted the show to look as if it was coming straight off the pages of a comic book. I used bold colors, thick lines, and selected half-tone accents throughout. The actors also had comic inspired makeup, using thick black lines where they normally apply highlight and shadow. The colors also tied characters together- each character was assigned a primary color (red for Carrie, as she's dominant, blue for greg, as he's passive, and yellow for Strasburger because he is the warm character) and the secondary colors they wore showed how they were connected.

Scenic Design- Jorge Lanuza

Lighting Design- Jared Land

Director- Elia Crawford

Photographs- Michelle Harvey

This show won honorable mention in costume design at USITT Southwest region's design competition.