Edith Head

Topics: Film, Paramount Pictures, Costume design Pages: 4 (1190 words) Published: May 28, 2013
Costume Designer Extraordinaire

Who was one of the most legendary costume designers in Hollywood? Edith Head, an American costume designer, takes that title. Head has won eight Academy Awards in her lifetime, more than any other woman, and nominated for thirty-one Academy Nominations. Edith Posener was born on October 28, 1897 in San Bernardino, California. She graduated from University of California at Berkley and then she got a master's degree in French from Stanford University. In 1923, she started teaching French and Art at the Hollywood School for Girls. On July 25, 1923, Edith married Charles Head, the brother of a former classmate. After a few of years of separation, the marriage ended in a divorce during 1936. Although the couple divorced, she continued to be known professionally as Edith Head until her death. (Chierichetti) Through hard work, design, and determination Edith Head is icon known as one of Hollywood’s best Costume Designers in her time.

Head was praised for her intelligence and diplomacy by co-workers and viewed as a plagiarist and publicity seeker by other designers. For Edith Head, the character always came first. She was driven by her passion to creat a “second skin” for the actors and actesses. Her mission was to help them effectively serve the needs of the character. Additionally, she had to meet the needs of the entire film along with the demands of the directors and studio bosses with their numerous dictates, whims, and requirements. She was a talented artist who strived for perfection and never stopped until it was right the first time. (Jorgenson)

Before films, there were plays and skits. One of the key aspect to any play is costumes. Without costumes, the viewer cannot get a full sense of the character and its personality. Without costumes there is no poduction and as films were developed the costume industry grew. Screen legend Bette Davis once said of Head: “Through the work of a fine costume designer an actor...
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