Characteristic Costume Design

by Alison Sundwall


The students will demonstrate their ability to communicate certain traits of a character through the design of a costume by designing a costume for a Shakespearean character.


Class Level:



Main Concepts:

costume design, characterization, script analysis, presentations


1994 National Standards:

Content Standard: 3: Designing and producing by conceptualizing and realizing artistic interpretations for informal or formal productions

Content Standard: 5: Researching by evaluating and synthesizing cultural and historical information to support artistic choices

Content Standard: 7: Analyzing, critiquing, and constructing meanings from informal and formal theatre, film, television, and electronic media productions

Content Standard: 8: Understanding context by analyzing the role of theatre, film, television, and electronic media in the past and the present


Unit Description:

Students will learn basic costume design techniques such as color, texture and pattern and will use that knowledge to show character in the design of a Shakespearean character’s costume.


Lesson Plans

Lesson 1: Understanding what costuming can communicate
The students will demonstrate an understanding of clothing communicating character by participating in a discussion and using clothes to create a character.


Lesson 2: Understanding HOW costuming communicates
Students The students will demonstrate their understanding of how to communicate with clothing (using color, texture and shape) by creating a design rendering for a specific character.


Lesson 3: Picking a play/characters and doing an analysis
Students will demonstrate their understanding of costuming characters by coming up with a costume rendering for a Shakespearean character of their choosing.


Lesson 4: Time to Share
The students will demonstrate knowledge of conceptualizing characters through costumes by presenting the designs that they created to the class.



Characteristic Costume Design Unit of Lessons.Alison Sundwall