What Do Costume Attendants Do?
With the continuing expansion of the entertainment industry, skilled costume attendants are a valuable asset to production teams, choosing detailed and authentic outfits for fashion shows, stage productions and music concerts. Attendants in this profession are responsible for fitting cast members and entertainers with appropriate attire, sometimes assisting with multiple costume changes throughout a single performance.The United States is estimated to experience a 7% increase in annual growth for this field between 2012 and 2022. This will help to generate 320 job openings each year, many of which are anticipated to be in the textile or theater industry.
Costume Attendants Skills and Abilities
In order to be successful in this position, you must have a thorough grasp of the fine arts, along with the ability to apply visual techniques effectively. Costume attendants should also excel at customer service to assess the needs of clients during fittings and consultations. In addition, you will be expected to hire and train assisting team members during large-scale productions. Other characteristics essential for this job include:
- A basic understanding of mathematics
- Creative problem solving and critical thinking skills
- Steady hand-eye coordination and attention to detail
- The ability to organize and multitask
- Clear and descriptive written and oral communication
Costume Attendants Duties
Many of the duties costume attendants are responsible for involve some level of physical activity. You will be expected to manipulate materials with your hands and arms throughout the entire design and application process, but more strenuous activities might include lifting and stooping to store or organize old props and accessories. In terms of paperwork, be prepared to use basic budgeting and math to record makeup and costume expenses. This will also be helpful for ordering and tracking inventory. Production managers also rely on costume attendants to maintain a fun and positive relationship with performers, making it less stressful to work together under pressure.
Costume Attendants Tools and Technology
Since costume attendants perform mostly hands-on activities, there is minimal technology needed for this position. In most cases, a basic proficiency with email and internet browsing software is sufficient, along with the use of simple management programs to track inventory and expenses. If you are interested in pursuing this field, you can expect to work regularly with tools such as barcode readers and commercial clothes dryers. You will also need to be familiar with different types of irons and sewing equipment depending on the materials being used for a project.
Education and Training for Costume Attendants
To become a costume attendant, you must obtain a high school diploma or an acceptable equivalent, with many people in this field still obtaining some level of college education. Although no work experience is required, applying for a temporary position as a set assistant can be a good opportunity to become familiar with the inner workings of an ongoing production. Training for this position is typically provided on a short-term basis and occurs primarily on the job.
Costume Attendants Salary
The average annual salary for costume attendants is estimated to be $41,700, but pay rates can vary according to your level of efficiency and experience with high-profile productions. Top earners in this fields can gross up to $80,000, but new employees can expect to make at least $18,900 per year starting off.
Costume Attendants Jobs by Geography
Oregon, Oklahoma and Texas are the states currently experiencing the most demand for this position, but you can expect to find better pay in other areas. If you are looking for the maximum salary associated with this field, try researching jobs in New York or California. These areas are both known as bustling hubs of fashion and drama, offering more lucrative opportunities for costume attendants.