Thursday, February 19, 2009

Stylist's Prop Kit

I really hate shopping. For clothes, that is. Shopping for books. Shopping for food. Shopping for kitchen supplies. Now that's fun.

Most fun of all is shopping for organising stuff. I've already described The Container Store as crack for the thirty-something female, but Manhattan Wardrobe Supply is even better. They sell everything stylists, make-up artists, costume designers & dressers need to do their jobs.

In my case I was replacing the few bits and bobs from my stylist's prop kit that I would need backstage at F's Fashion Week show last night, as mine is back in London where most of my styling work is based. (In New York I mainly write or edit for magazines.)

A prop kit is essentially all the bits & pieces we need to make a shoot work. Tit tape, gaffer tape, fishing wire, cosmetic stain remover, dress shields, chicken fillets (silicone breast enhancers) in a couple of different skin tones, nipple petals, shoe inserts of every kind, shoe horn, seam rippers, thread nippers, sewing kit, scissors, tape measure, lint rollers, Static Guard, Wrinkle Free spray, first aid kit, binder & bulldog clips, lots of underwear in different sizes and skin tones - these are the absolute basics.

I also have hand warmers for freezing cold outdoor shoots, a large portable steamer, dozens of lightweight suit carriers, a folding salesman's rolling rack, some very large suitcases and a mini hand-held steamer. And a sewing machine for costume design jobs.

I barely scraped the tip off the iceberg yesterday at the supply store but at least I have my bare necessities until I go back to England and dig out my kit. Although it was hard restraining myself as the store has everything you could possibly need for styling & wardrobe work. And it's a lot, lot cheaper: my dispenser of 30 feet of tit tape was $5.99 compared to $10 or so for a few strips in stores like Victoria's Secret.