Costume workshop

Costume workshop

This artist-led workshop from Northern Stage looks at how to create costumes and then put on a performance. Watch a real class at work with professional designer Angela Simpson and then have a go yourself.

Learn how to make costumes using patterned wallpaper and cheap materials you probably already have in school. These costumes were inspired by the play The Glass Slipper, which is featured elsewhere on Culture Street, but you can easily apply your own theme.

A lesson plan for teachers to help develop art and design skills and start a drama project.

Key Stage:

KS 2 Art and Design, English


The five films show the key stages of a simple costume workshop which was delivered on one day by days by designer Angela Simpson with a group of Year 6 pupils at Northern Stage in Newcastle upon Tyne. The workshop begins with the introduction of the Cinderella story. The group then get an insight into the research methods of a professional designer before going on to design and make costumes to fit them. The materials used include wallpaper end rolls, feathers, sequins, glitter and tinsel. You will also need scissors, a stapler and glue.

The Cinderella story

The group find out about the story of Cinderella. Erica Whyman, director of the play, The Glass Slipper tells them about her updated version of the traditional story.


Set and costume designer Angela Simpson shares her research methods and ideas with the group. They begin their own designs.


Drawing round the outline of the body onto the reverse side of wallpaper and then draw your costume.

Cutting out

Cutting out the shape of your costume and adding decoration with paint and glue.

End product

The group complete their costumes and organise a catwalk display of their finished costumes.

Development Activity:

Elsewhere on CultureStreet there are more films about other Northern Stage productions, The Glass Slipper and designer, Angela Simpson.

Angela Simpson

The Glass Slipper

Oh What a Lovely War

There are also other lesson pans that might support this costume workshop. Including:

Carnival Costumes


Learning Objectives:

Pupils should be taught: to increase their proficiency in the handling of different materials
1. identify the materials used in stage costumes
2. identify techniques used in producing costume design using a variety of materials
3. create a costume using the techniques outlined on the site.
4. create a performance incorporating costume
5. realise that there are contemporary artists who create art as a living....understand the motivations behind the choice of art as a career
6. to review what they and others have done, say what they think and feel about it and what they might change.

Research, Notes and Links:

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