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Theater ,
submitted by
Michele Anderson

Costume Design Assistant

POSITION: Costume Design Assistant

REPORTS TO: Costume Director, Costume Shop Assistant

CLASSIFICATION: Seasonal, Non-exempt

Theatre Overview

As one of the country’s largest ensemble theatres dedicated to the creation of new work, Lookingglass Theatre Company seeks to redefine the theatrical experience and to make theatre more exhilarating, inspirational, and accessible to all. Founded in 1988 by a group of Northwestern University theatre graduates, Lookingglass moved into its permanent home in the historic Water Tower Water Works on Chicago’s Michigan Avenue in 2003. Now in its 35th Season, the Company is a respected source for story-centered theatrical work that is evocative, physical, and visually rich. 

With a roster of 29 Ensemble Members and 22 Artistic Associates, Lookingglass productions are centered on ensemble with training in theatre, dance, music, and circus arts. Through its powerful, original theatre, the Company's goal is to fire the imagination with love, to celebrate the human capacity to taste and smell, weep and laugh, create and destroy, and wake up where we first fell—changed, charged and empowered. 

Position Summary

The Costume Design Assistant reports to the Costume Director and works closely with the Costume Designer to ensure that all costume elements of the show are brought to completion in a safe and efficient manner. The process of costuming a performer is inherently intimate and the Costume Design Assistant will promote a welcoming and safe space that protects this intimacy and promote body positivity. As a member of the Costume Department, it is your duty to shepherd a production process that is focused on supportive, sustainable, and anti-racist practices.

Key Responsibilities

- Agree to abide by organization-wide anti-racism guidelines and incorporate an anti-racist lens into daily practice.

- Adherence to and participation in the implementation of Lookingglass’ COVID protocols, including providing proof of full vaccination before the first day of employment.

- Pull, shop, or source costumes based off collages, research, and/or renderings given by the Costume Designer.

- Swatch and shop materials locally.

- Maintain organization on all shopped items: purchase/returns accounting, receipt logging, and sourcing documentation.

- Generate and organize show paperwork as new information comes from design meetings, rehearsal reports and fitting notes.

- Assist in actors’ fittings with the Costume Director and Costume Designer by taking notes on all alterations and shopping needs.

- Attend technical rehearsals and previews.

- Maintain a clean and orderly Costume Shop.

Required Qualifications

- Actively working towards Anti-racist ideals.

- 4 years’ experience as a Costume Designer, Assistant Costume Designer or Shopper at the collegiate and/or professional level, or similar field.

- Ability to read and interpret theatrical sewing alterations.

- Experience running costume fittings. Exercising tact and promoting a safe space while working with actors and designers.

- Tolerate exposure to metals, common laundry detergents, and materials like wool or latex.

- Ability to sit or stand for long periods of time.

Desired Qualifications

- Ability to move and transport costumes weighing up to 20 lbs unassisted.

- Ability to ascend and descend flights of stairs when working on site at the theatre.

- Ability to commute around the Chicago area to and from the Costume Shop for shopping needs.

- Advanced experience shopping online and in store based on information from the Costume Designer’s research or collage.

- Intermediate knowledge of costume and fashion history.

- Intermediate knowledge of fabric types and applications.

- Intermediate experience using Microsoft Excel and Google Drive.

- Beginner experience operating domestic sewing machines and/or sergers.

- Beginner knowledge of costume construction techniques to communicate effectively with members of the Costume Shop.

Producer commits to the following:

- Access to Anti-racism training.

- First Aid/CPR Certification.

- BIPOC Hair, Wig and Makeup training.

- Sick Leave in line with the Chicago Sick Time Policy.

- Guaranteed weekly minimum to encompass up to 40 hours of work; OT begins after 40 hours/week and is paid at time and a half of the regular rate.

- Reimburse parking and/or mileage at federal rate of $0.58 for travel between work and off site locations up to $200 per production.


Steadfast Tin Soldier

Monday, October 17, 2022 – Friday, November 18, 2022


Monday, January 2, 2023 – Friday, February 17, 2023

Lucy And Charlie’s Honeymoon

Monday, April 24, 2023 – Friday, June 2, 2023

Shop Hours are Monday through Friday, 9 am – 5 pm with 30 min paid lunch.

During Tech and Previews, we ask the Costume Design Assistant to be willing to work flexible hours/days including evenings and weekends. Work week will remain at roughly 40 hours, with potential OT.

Candidates with partial availability will be considered.


$24.00/hour, OT after 40 hours per week.

Lookingglass Theatre Company is an Equal Opportunity Employer. We provide equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, national origin, age, genetics, or status as an individual with a disability. We welcome applications from all qualified applicants.

Current COVID-19 vaccination is mandatory before onboarding, unless a reasonable accommodation is requested and granted in accordance with Lookingglass policy.


Costume Shop: John Hancock Center, 875 N Michigan Ave, Suite 1340

Theatre: Water Tower Water Works, 163 E Pearson St.

The Design Assistant will occasionally have shopping errands offsite.

How to Apply:

Please contact Melissa Perkins, Costume Director, at for more information if interested. No phone calls please.

Submit application to:

In subject line: LTC – Costume Design Assistant

Body of email: Short description of your interest in the position

Attach: PDF Resume & 3 references

Contact Info:
Melissa Perkins
Job Type: Freelance/Contract/Temp
Location: Chicago, IL