Conscious Costume is a visionary approach to costume design, construction and management that challenges the creative process to be conscious of the unique environmental and ethical impact that textiles, clothing and fashion has on the world.
We use the richness of our collective voices to work with manufactures, vendors, theatre companies, shops and individuals to create costumes that are positive for the world. Conscious Costume endeavors to practice in ways that strengthen our world through our storytelling discipline.
Provide a home base for professionals in the costume industry to discuss and share ways to design, build and maintain costumes in a way that is more conscious of the environmental and ethical impact of our work.
Assemble resource lists and identify best practices for ourselves and our colleagues.
Endeavor to enable more conscious actions through resources, partnerships, and financial support.
“The average consumer does not understand the environmental impact of clothing and textiles.”
Kristen P Ahern, Founder
Conscious Costume was founded by costume designer Kristen P Ahern
Most audiences don't get a sense of the full scale of the costumes that go into a given production so the scope and impact of our work is not fully understood.
The average consumer does not understand the environmental impact of clothing and textiles.
There is a future where every piece of fabric or supply used to construct a costume will exit that shop without going to a landfill.
We, as a predominantly female industry, can and should strive to support the predominantly female workers in the global textile and fashion industry through our positive purchasing choices.
Ever since my first exposure to a costume shop environment in undergrad, I remember seeing piles and piles of fabric scraps in the trash and it broke my heart to see clean fabric scraps go into a trash can and get destroyed by the remainder of someone's ramen noodles. I questioned how to improve the waste stream of a costume shop. However, I soon realized that controlling waste was not enough and in order to truly improve, I needed to radically reimagine my supply chain.
I searched for information specifically about sustainable costumes and was disheartened to discover that there was little to be found. Fashion models did not seem to fit, I even considered leaving costume design for a profession that advocated for the environment in a more tangible way. Ultimately, I chose my art and my voice as tools for aspirational change from within.