Countries throughout the world are known for their traditional clothing. The kimono, for instance, has been worn by the Japanese for thousands of years. In Europe, kilts are traditional wear for Scotland, and in Germany and Austria Tracht clothing is their fashion identifier.
See more traditional clothing styles of the world here.
The United States has had many fashion stages over its 243 year history, but the most iconic is the American Cowboy. They arose from the Vaqueros of Mexico, and were known as expanders of the west from cattle driving. The traditional garb of cowboys includes:
Cowboy Hat – which protects the head from the sun & the elements (John B. Stetson opened up his hat shop in Philadelphia in 1865, and today his cowboy hats are still the number one symbol of Western clothing.)
Bandanna – this simple piece of cloth has many uses from mopping up sweat to covering the face from wind & dust storms
Western Shirt – it’s long sleeve protected the wearer from the sun
Jeans – the long legged pants protected the wearer from the elements and were made of sturdier fabric to prevent rips and tears (In 1890, Levi Strauss & Co developed their first pair of 501 Jeans.)
Chaps – (pronounced shaps) were made of leather and provided protection from high brush or from the livestock while the cowboys were on horseback
Boots and Spurs – cowboy boots have pointed toes to fit into the stirrup while the raised heels act as a stopper to prevent the boot from slipping while in the stirrup. Spurs were used to signal the horse when and how to move.
Learn more about the origin of the American Cowboy here.
Today’s cowboys still follow the clothing components of the early cowboys. Mens Western shirts come in a variety of colors and patterns, and have pearl snaps or buttons. Sometimes Western shirts are accented by a bolo necktie. The bolo necktie first appeared in the 1940s. A man named Victor Emmanuel Cedarstaff claimed to have invented the bolo necktie and later patented the slide design.
Womens – or cowgirls – also have a line of Western wear including pearl snap front shirts and dresses. Their dresses are often accented with fringe, conchas, and if a short skirt, a contrasting crinoline.
The Cowboy may be the icon of American fashion culture, but the United States has had a lot of amazing fashion throughout its history. SCC carries authentic vintage clothing for men, women, and children from the 1950s thru the 2000s. And…
SCC is excited to announce the expansion of our vintage and uniform collections! Take a look at some of the examples of new pieces available for rental today!
American History – United States Flag
Did you know?
The flag of the United States has been altered 26 times since 1777? The current United States flag is the 27th version and is made up of 13 horizontal stripes – 7 red and 6 white – and a field of blue with 50 white 5-pointed stars. There have been many interpretations as to what the colors mean, but the most accepted/known description came from former President Ronald Reagan in 1986 who explained, “Red for courage and readiness to sacrifice; white for pure intentions and high ideals; and blue for vigilance and justice.”
The American flag also has several nicknames including: Old Glory, The Grand Old Flag, The Stars and Stripes, The Star-Spangled Banner, and The Old Red, White, and Blue.
Some have claimed that wearing the American flag as apparrel is illegal, but it’s actually not. It’s frowned upon, but you won’t be arrested for your American flag bikini, shirt, or bandanna.
Two 212 sqft Cages and One 276 sqft Office Now Available!
Costume prep is essential to every production! Let us help you with our new cage and office rentals. We are conveniently located on the upper westside of Atlanta with close access to I-75. Click here to be redirected for more information!
The suit and tie has a long standing position in men’s clothing history. The evolution of the suit started with the elaborately decorated outfits of men at court (1600s – 1700s). Since then menswear has become a lot simpler.
The basic parts of a suit have seen adjustments throughout history:
Jackets had wide opened fronts that became single or double breasted.
The widths of lapels have widened, narrowed, and widened again.
The long waistcoat (first introduced in 1666) was replaced with the shorter vest.
Long trousers made stockings and breeches obsolete.
Heeled footwear gave way for flat boots and shoes.
Fabrics became scarce during wartime, and made available again during economic booms.
Cravats & ascots changed to bow ties and neckties.
The Master of Murder, Alfred Hitchcock, always made his appearances in a black suit and tie. From his cameos in most of his films to his introductory monologues of his television show Alfred Hitchcock Presents, he can be seen wearing the men’s fashion staple. Although Hitchcock personally kept it simple with his black suit and tie, he used costuming as a way to communicate to his audience the true nature of the characters in his films. Colors were particularly important in demonstrating the good or evil, the innocent or guilty, or the hero or victim of a character.
Join us all month as we display our menswear collection and revere one of film’s greatest directors – Alfred Hitchcock. We can dress your male leads for success with our business attire, formal wear, and casual clothes – complete with complimenting accessories. Be sure to follow us on Facebook and Instagram for photos and information about our menswear collection.
Did you know?
During his time as a director (1919-1980), Hitchcock directed 52 films and appeared in 40 of them! What started as a joke became his signature, and thus became known as “King of the Cameo.”
The cleaning of costumes should always be done professionally or with care, but what happens when you have an emergency on set?
How do you get that stain out of the actor’s shirt before he’s called to set?
How do you refresh the armpits of a shirt or dress that is worn over and over?
How do you keep rental shoes healthy for multiple wears?
Never fear! SCC has great tips, tricks, and products to help resolve and prevent some of set life’s costume mishaps like those above:
Salad oil stain on a shirt? Try WHITE CHALK! Gently blot out as much of the oil as you can with a clean cloth then take crushed white chalk and gently rub into fresh stain. The chalk will absorb the oil and you can “lift” the stain out with a lint roller or if you have the time, wash out in cold water.
Yellowing armpits or lingering underarm odor? Try ANTIBACTERIAL SOAP! Bacteria is the culprit when it comes to discoloration and odor. Use antibacterial hand soap to eliminate those problems by gently rubbing into the problem areas and wash in cold water.
Multiple users in your rental shoes? Try END BAC! Stop the spread of foot fungus and odor with End Bac. Spray into shoes after each use to keep shoes fresh for the next user.
Quick fixes are always good to have in your kit, but it’s even better to have preventative solutions to stop the problem before it starts. Check out these products that are available for purchase in our supply store:
Do you have a go-to product that you must have in your kit? Do you have a cleaning trick that has saved you on set? TELL US! Share your tips and products on our FACEBOOK page or INSTAGRAM page. Be sure to follow us for tips, tricks, and products all this month!
This month SCC will honor women of history, women of film and costuming, and our beautiful vintage women’s collection. The contributions women bestowed throughout history can be seen in all fields of study, and women’s clothing provides a look into the experiences of their time; telling the story of the women who’ve worn them.
Our vintage collection consists of women’s clothing and fashion primarily from the 1950s thru the 1990s. We also house a few historical collection pieces from the Renaissance era and late 19th century.
Be sure to Follow Us on Facebook & Instagram for posts on women’s history, women of film and costuming, and on pieces of our women’s vintage collection. Join our list on Facebook to get monthly email blasts about the happenings at SCC, or click here to sign up!
Red is the most evocative color in the spectrum. Not only is it visually arresting, the color has strong physical effects such as elevated blood pressure, increased confidence, and higher levels of energy. Our ancestors saw red as the color of fire and blood – energy and primal life forces. Most of the color’s symbolism today arises from its historic associations. Not every hue is created equal; a slight adjustment of tone or intensity can radically alter the overall mood and meaning of a piece.
Described as “A drop of the heart’s blood of Mother Earth,” the ruby is often associated with vitality and sensuality. The precious gemstone can range in shade from pink to bright red but the most valuable of rubies are a dark red hue called “pigeon blood.” Historically, the stone was thought to have healing properties and could improve blood circulation.
Burgundy is a dark red hue tending towards brown – the color of wine. The color is synonymous with nobility, sophistication, and power. Historically, royal families use the color in tandem with luxurious fabrics such as velvet which further associates the color with wealth and elegance.
The color of flames, scarlet symbolizes literal and figurative heat. The orange tinted hue evokes feelings of passion, romance, and/or anger. It is also mentioned multiple times in the Bible in reference to the sin of lust. Conversely, scarlet is often used in religious clothing and considered to be the “color of the blood of Christ.”
The intensity of red mixed with the purity of white. Pink is a color closely related to femininity, youth, and tenderness. While both red and pink are used in reference to romance, red is indicative of passion and sexuality and pink is used for gentleness and lovingness.
(All photos featured are of pieces available at Southeast Costume)
Have you ever wondered why there are American Flag patches with the field of blue on the “wrong” side of the patch? That “wrong” side is actually right…for the right shoulder that is.
When selecting American Flag patches, be sure you know which shoulder it goes on – don’t get caught with your actor on camera with the American Flag patch on the wrong sleeve!
American Flag patches with the field of blue on the left as shown below are to be placed on the LEFT shoulder of the garment.
American Flag patches with the field of blue on the right as shown below are to be placed on the RIGHT shoulder of the garment.
The American Flag appearing as backwards on the right shoulder gives the observer the impression that the flag is flowing back as the person who is wearing the flag is moving forward. When approved for wear, the American Flag replica is to be sewn 1/2 inch below the shoulder seam.
“The only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing.” ~ Socrates
Want to know more about the costuming industry?
Interested in historical dress?
Committed to developing your skills?
Have a passion for fashion?
Mastering your craft should be your objective while pursuing a career in the costuming industry. Own your skills whether they’re in design, ageing/dying, coordination, tailoring, historical clothing, dressing, etc. The most important tool is furthering your understanding of your craft by continuing to educate yourself.
Southeast Costume has a small but mighty research library in house for your use.
Southeast Costume invites you to visit the shop and keep developing your skills. Our in house library contains books on fashion, costume design, vintage clothing catalogs, historical dress, military dress, photography, cinema and more!
Do you have books or catalogs you’d like to donate to the SCC library? We’d love to have them!
“When I do period work, I really like to read about the period as much as I like to look at pictures because sometimes the written word is much better at conveying what their lives were really like and how much they had and where their clothes came from. Because, a lot of time, people dressed in their Sunday best to pose for a picture.” ~ Colleen Atwood, Designer
Patch glue is a nuisance to costumers. It causes residue or stains to adhere to costumes and results in permanent damage and replacement fees. SCC wants to help you avoid costly damage and needless stress when you’re required to attach patches to costumes. Read on for quick tips on how to attach patches correctly:
Patch glue is the thin layer of glue that manufactures add to the back of patches to help keep the embroidery thread from becoming loose, caught, or frayed after prolonged use. This layer of glue may also be used to permanently attach the patch to a garment, but in the film industry where costumes are interchangeable, and used for many purposes, there are solutions to avoid the damage.
PUT FACING ON THE BACK OF THE PATCH – Adding facing to the back of the patch makes the glue adhere to the facing instead of the garment the patch is being placed on. It requires only one application and the patch is ready to be used over and over again.
SEW ON BY HAND – Sewing your patches onto your garments will save you from having to use tapes or adhesives that could damage your costumes. We recommend hand sewing patches to garments. Hand sewing a patch to a costume allows wider stitches which aids in the removal of patches later. Machine sewing can permanently damage a garment if the stitches are to tight and hard to remove.
AVOID WASHING AND/OR DRYING COSTUMES WITH PATCHES STILL ATTACHED – Heat from the washer and dryer can cause the glue to become tacky and thus attaching itself to the shirt. This can be avoided if you remove patches before washing garments. However, because there is never enough time to attach and remove patches over and over again, you may refer to the first tip and add facing to the back of the patch before hand sewing your patches to your costumes. **Be mindful of new patches! Sometimes the thread color can bleed onto costumes during/after washing!**
BONUS TIP: Want to avoid additional labor fees? Be sure to remove all your patches from costumes before returning!