Costume Society Patterns Awards 2022 open

The 2022 Costume Society's Patterns of Fashion and Patterns for Performance Awards are now open. For the 2022 Awards we will be focusing on menswear.


The Costume Society’s annual Patterns of Fashion and Patterns for Performance Awards celebrate Janet Arnold’s significant contribution to dress history and specifically her invaluable texts Patterns of Fashion to inform costume practices. Both of the awards invite students of dress history, costume practice and costuming to develop a final outcome using one of her patterns from the books published. The Patterns of Fashion award asks the applicants to produce a historically accurate outcome informed by one of Janet Arnold’s patterns, and the Patterns for Performance invites the applicants to use one of Janet Arnold’s patterns to inspire a design for a performance garment.

For the 2022 Awards we will be focusing on menswear. For the Patterns of Fashion Award please note the competition is for a reconstruction, not an interpretation. Students should aim to reconstruct a man’s garment from one of Janet Arnold’s Patterns of Fashion books or Norah’s Waugh’s Cut of Men’s Clothes, as far as possible to the pattern specifications – not to a contemporary figure or to a scaled down size.

For the Patterns for Performance Award please note the competition is for a design based on a male character for a performance – dance, theatre opera or film. The starting point for the design should be a Janet Arnold period pattern from one of her Patterns of Fashion books or a Norah Waugh pattern from The Cut of Men’s Clothes. The garment will be judged on silhouette, line and period accuracy relative to the chosen pattern.

The Patterns of Fashion and Patterns for Performance Awards are an important part of the Costume Society’s output that promotes the high standard of craft and artistry that they produce. You can see examples of past finalists and all the details on how to enter on our Grants and Awards pages. 

The deadline for applications for the Patterns of Fashion Awards and Patterns for Performance Awards is Friday 10th December 2021.

Image: Anna Lienbacher 2021 Patterns for Performance finalist.

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