Category Archives: costumes



Pluralsight’s popular Chief Revenue Officer, Joe DiBartolomeo.


On stage in Florida at their January 2018 sales kickoff event-




Concept art: Adam Gunn, Pluralsight Creative Director.



Fitting day: Joe and Adam at Pluralsight’s Kaysville, Utah offices-


A base-layer batman suit, about to be cannibalized/customized-



Custom dye sub printed fabric in Pluralsight’s orange-to-pink gradient, fashioned into a superhero cape-



Cape pleating-



More custom dye sub fabric-



Prepping lighting elements for Joe’s chest piece-



Ready now for color change on its outer gasket-



Prepping chest feature with binding around circumference and velcro mounting surface-

Custom 18th Century Dress: Filmed in Utah Awards Show

A promotional three-piece gown, created and worn to present the award for best costume design at the 2nd Annual Filmed in Utah Awards Show, 2013.

With little more than a week to build, its value (with the pannier) is about 5k. The least costly parts of this dress are its fabrics, mostly imported synthetics. My pals helped me fit, hem and hand-finish so we could get this done in time.

Asked to present that year’s award for best costumes in front of hundreds of people, I couldn’t simply head to Macy’s or Nordstrom to look for any old dress.



With Marlys Miller-Fladeland and her daughter.


On display for a time in our shop’s front parlour. Pierpont Avenue location.


Pages from the Chronicles of Western Fashion.  John Peacock , Harry N. Abrams, Inc., New York, 1991.
Costumes 1775-1780. pp 136-137

In our shop we refer to this book as “the bible”.  It’s one of our most used texts. We often hand it to clients, asking them to describe the silhouette and details of costumes they want by picking elements out of the lineup. It’s a great book. Its illustrations detail changes in silhouette and ornamentation in a decade-by-decade progression.


Dear friend and dressing helper, backstage, Brent.

With actor Danny James.

Being accosted by James Christian Morris.

With the radiant, brilliant Jennifer Sommers.


With voiceover talent Brenda Myers.


With artist Timm Paxton.



Backstage at the Grand Theater, with hair and makeup genius Amber Pearson.


Final fitting in the shop.

Brittany Babb and Melissa Welinsky mark my front hem while I hold the yardstick.

Temporary white lacing in the final fitting.

Ready to mark the hem, standing on the cutting table.

Sleeves developed. Shown here on a dress dummy along with a vest I was making for another client, over a wonderful necktie kilt made by Melissa Welinsky.  An interesting outfit.


Jennifer Sommers, adjusting the straps inside the pannier, pulling them in tighter to create a wider, flatter pannier profile.



Bodice fitting. Many thanks to Jean Hunnisett, author of Period Costume for Stage and Screen, for wonderful recipes, construction details, research and period patterns in your books- a treasured part of my library.


In the beginning: Merely a big collage of fabrics that look swell together.


Custom Rock & Roll Tribute Dresses: The Cramps

To celebrate its 28th anniversary, SLUG Magazine staged a fashion show featuring 28 designers, 28 models, plus hair and makeup by The Paul Mitchell School of Salt Lake City and Ogden as well as the Taylor Andrews Academy.

Jen McGrew was assigned the year 2009 and created a tribute dress to *The Cramps*. Their lead singer, Lux Interior, died in 2009, appearing on SLUG’s March cover of that year.  Rest in peace, LUX! Old rockers like us still miss you:(



The dress is a custom cincher with a basque and tutu of custom dye sublimation-printed fabric featuring The Cramps’ logo and artwork from their first album, “Bad Music for Bad People”. Custom, cute sequined bikini bottoms and removable veil are icing on this delightful cake. Modeled by the lovely Yazmine Tatiana @MermaidNymora , with makeup by @cakefacedeez , we are very proud of these show-stoppers.








Thank you so much to Angela Brown and everyone on the SLUG Magazine crew, all the designers, models, makeup and hair artists, DJ’s and Robert Hyrum Hirschi for the wonderful pics here.


Nice article with pics about SLUG’s 28th anniversary fashion show here:…/slug-28th-anniversary-fashion-show/


Congratulations SLUG and here’s to 28 more!

Custom Carnivale Costumes: Rio De Janeiro


Custom costume for a 2017 client, vacation bound for Carnivale in Rio De Janero.

Modeled here for us by the lovely Yaz, with photos by Chris Blackburn Photography.


Couture bra and belt, pheasant feathers, goose biots and many, many hours of hand beading on a fantastic model = one beautiful vision.

All the tall feathers are insertable and secure, but also removable so ALL items can pack flat for safe travel and storage.




Visit Chris Blackburn Photography

HMA (Hide My Ass) Commercial Costume Design: Chamber Media

Many good, innocent people lost their clothes in this fun commercial that underscores how vulnerable you are whenever using unprotected public wi-fi. For client, HMA (Hide My Ass) app.


Thank you to KJMagnetics, a great resource for the rare-earth, neodymium magnets we used in our effects. Thank you also to props wiz Wray Featherstone- your off-camera choreography made the execution of all our breakaway wardrobe possible. Turns out, too, that saving all our metal corset stay ends and bits for all those years was essential. Awesome concept, crew and content:) Thank you,  Chamber Media!


Ad Stuffed With Nudity and Shaved Back Hair Makes a More Serious Point About Wifi Security

Custom Irish Dance Costumes: BYU

Have you witnessed “Christmas Around the World”?? Absolutely stunning. BYU Folk Dance Program’s amazing production had me in tears during several of the performances (the Samba, in particular– ask me about it sometime and I’ll try to describe how amazing it is– and the Irish dance, of course, had my DNA vibrating at a particularly high frequency).



THESE are the new Irish Dance costumes our shop made for these dedicated lovelies.

All-star performances from everyone and great leadership from champion Irish dance captain Victoria Ringer, Folk Dance faculty Jeanette Geslison and wardrobe manager Amy Handy. The program decided it was time for a costume redesign with a sparkly new look and feel, and we were thrilled to work with them to produce these.




Mesmerizing, in performance at BYU’s Marriot Center




Early prototype skirt in production. With mint green lycra underneath and sparkle netting. It was nixed when they decided their netting added too much fullness.


Cutting circle skirts. You can usually identify which patterns our shop develops. Years ago. I bought a giant roll of red paper and we’ve been using it ever since.



Sleeves. Being cut in three sizes.



Tops of the bodysuits with zippers installed, inside out and ready for the black shorts to be attached. I loved how they reminded me of pelts.


byu_irish_dance_costumes10_mcgrew_studiosbyu_irish_dance_costumes11_mcgrew_studiosbyu_irish_dance_costumes12_mcgrew_studiosbyu_irish_dance_costumes13_mcgrew_studiosThe inimitable Yaz, admiring our work.



Fluffy skirts! 2 layers of mint silk chiffon over silver sparkle lycra.



Yaz and Diane. Rhinestoning necklines.



Diane. Ever methodical about her work.



Fantastic attention to placement and detail by Diane and Yaz…



Backstage at the Marriot Center for the Performing Arts-



With Annie!


So psyched (and grateful) that Eliza Crosby and Annie could come to dress rehearsal! Champion Highland Dancer Annie getting her pic taken with the whole BYU Scottish troupe. And me, too, — because of the Scots-Irish thing, of course…


Extra love to good elf helpers Eliza Crosby,Diane Thompson, Yazmine Tatiana and Michelle Marie. My superstars:) xo


Happy holidays everyone!

Custom Boots and Spats: Kris Kringle the Musical


Holy tap-dancing elves!

In 2015 we made a bunch of custom elf boots as well as some elf SPATS for Ohio production and costume designer Inda Blatch-Geib. She designed the new production, Kris Kringle the Musical, that premiered Friday, December 4th 2015 in Olmsted Falls.


Thank you Inda for giving McGrews a nice shout out in The Akron Beacon Journal


These stage production pics are from




The ones in front are boots. The rest are SPATS worn over their tap shoes!


Great assistant and good helper elf, Peri C.  showing off our hard work!!



A visitor is unexpectedly asked to model some boots in progress-


Custom Superhero Costume: Littlest Wonder Woman – Josh Rossi Photography

Famous Photographer, Famous Daughter



A project that’s had 33 million views and counting as of January 2017.


When Jessica Alba, George Takei, plus even the new Wonder Woman film director Patty Jenkins are talking about your work, trust us, it’s pretty cool.


McGrew Studios and Josh Rossi Photography have wanted to work together on a project for several years, and at last we finally have!






The convergence of his daughter Nellee’s 3rd birthday,  the 75th anniversary of Wonder Woman, Halloween 2016, plus the new Wonder Woman movie trailer all culminated in a personal project for Josh that hit viral status within just several days.  As Josh told KSL TV in an interview at our studio, “All the trending buttons have been hit with both the timing and subject matter of his project,” (not to mention Full Time Photographer‘s original click-bait article title that waves a design and labor rate in readers’ faces).



Josh’s project has generated a BIG range of discussion, contention, admiration and even scorn– throughout comment threads on all the websites that have reposted the project or created their own new features about it.


At McGrews, we are naturally just agog at all this activity and very proud to have played our role in this fantastic project.


Some of the videos, articles and links:



Nellee is one cool, three-year old superhero!



Costume made by McGrews’ cartel members Jennifer McGrew with Diane Thompson, plus custom sword and shield by Randy Crit Killen. We love how great Josh’s photos make our work look:)


We made Nellee’s costume using several types of leathers along with worbla details, lacing, grommets and a variety of trimmings. We designed her leather bodice to be adjustable in the back as well as on the sides, because she will grow fast!


Her leather skirt pieces are sewn onto their own waistband which is attached under the bodice, and this whole element is alterable so it can also be adjused as she grows. Nelee’s armored spats lace up over her boots and should also endure two or more shoe-size increases. We made Nellee’s shoulder straps expandable, and for adjustability over time,  plus created her pauldrons to slide on her straps.





Something Josh brought up after the KSL interview at our shop was the idea of creating and marketing patterns for kids’ costumes. Based on the overwhelming response to this project’s release on the web, it’s something we may seriously consider.



We wanted this costume to be something that replicates the cinematic version and something that she’ll enjoy for a long time. We predict she may wear it until she is five or older!



Would you like a pattern for this Wonder Woman costume that you could create for your own 2-4 year old? Tell us what you think.



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Props and effects wizard Crit Randy Killen’s process photos.
He made Nellee’s Wonder Woman sword and shield.













Crit even made a cool bag for Nellee’s sword and shield.


Johnny Killen helped his dad, Crit, with this project.




Sword and shield delivered to Josh!


Follow and see more from Crit on Facebook-

Barf Pockets

Definitely as awesome as they sound.
Sometimes all a costume needs are the final detailed additions– in this case, new POCKETS!

Heroically, two pairs of khaki trousers sacrificed themselves to become the new pockets and dropseat we added to Bill’s existing coveralls.  Now he is the essence of “Barf” from Mel Brooks’ hilarious Spaceballs film.

Thanks, Bill for having us make your new pockets and for sharing your photos.

May the schwartz be with you!

Photos: Mark Loertscher Photography