Block 575: January 12, 2015


And, just like that, life went from zero to 60 and then back to zero before anyone knew what was going on…

Date: January 12, 2015

Crane: 575

Days Spent on Project: 693

Location: NW Portland, OR

Person I would have sent it to: Tess S.

Tess was another one of the artists that worked in Jeff F.’s studio in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. We didn’t get a chance to work together on the Paper Mill Playhouse production of Newsies (we only had budgeted to work with Julianne), but she was the person I worked with most when the production was transferring to Broadway.

Every time I had a new item that had been custom made for a performer, I would trek it out to Brooklyn where Jeff and Tess would descend on it, painting and spritzing and splashing and dyeing it to make it look appropriately gritty and gross. (There was a point, as I was buying a wool cashmere plaid fabric that cost more than $100 a yard, when I thought how expensive these clothes were… These were supposed to be poor, homeless, orphan boys who lived on the street… and we were buying them cashmere wool for knickers and vests and then throwing paint at said knickers and vest. Wow.)

Tess was really great, and very hands on. She would come to the theater during tech rehearsals and set up an outdoor painting area in the back alleyway behind the Nederlander, spraying dyes and paints at clothes on the fire escape in the back. It was all very New York.

Music I listened to while sewing: The shop has some very 90s grunge music playing on the radio. Nirvana just finished screaming.

Thoughts/Feelings behind the block: It’s crazy to think I started designing this show out in Portland back in October and that I had my shop start building pieces for it in November (just to give them something to do). As of last night, I realized I was taking small maintenance notes and that I was no longer looking to change any of the design ideas behind the clothes on stage or add anything. The show was done.


Three months of work, and it’s done just like that.

It was fun, but it’s time to move on… I start tech rehearsals for another show next Tuesday and then we start rehearsals for another play the Tuesday after that. The roller coaster continues here in Portland.

Meanwhile, I got another request from a friend to move to Chicago. Woof.

And all I want to do tonight is go home and take a nap…

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