Costume and Wardrobe Department

Film Crew Position: Background Stylist Assistant

What does a Background Stylist Assistant do?

A Background Stylist Assistant is an integral part of the Costume and Wardrobe Department on a film set, responsible for assisting in the styling of background performers to ensure visual continuity and authenticity within a scene. They work under the guidance of the key background stylist or costume designer to prepare and maintain the costumes worn by extras, which helps to create a believable world in the film's narrative.

What role does a Background Stylist Assistant play?

The role of a Background Stylist Assistant involves a variety of tasks that contribute to the smooth operation of the wardrobe department. They are tasked with assisting in the selection, fitting, and maintenance of costumes for background actors. This might include organizing and labeling clothing, ensuring that each extra has the proper attire before stepping onto the set, and making quick adjustments or repairs as needed. A Background Stylist Assistant must be attentive to detail and able to work quickly in a fast-paced environment, often under time constraints.

Do you need to go to college to be a Background Stylist Assistant?

While a college degree is not strictly necessary to become a Background Stylist Assistant, many in the industry hold degrees in fashion, costume design or a related field. Valuable education can also come from vocational schools or specialized programs that focus on fashion and costuming. However, practical experience is often regarded as equally important. Aspiring Background Stylist Assistants typically gain experience through internships, apprenticeships, or by starting in entry-level positions within the costume and wardrobe departments.

What skills do you need to be a Background Stylist Assistant?

To excel as a Background Stylist Assistant, one must possess a blend of practical and interpersonal skills. Key requirements include a strong understanding of costume history and design, sewing and tailoring abilities, and knowledge of fabric types and their care. Organizational skills are essential for managing multiple outfits and accessories. The ability to work collaboratively and communicate effectively with team members is also crucial, as is the capacity to remain calm and efficient under pressure. Creativity and a good eye for detail are additional skills that can help a Background Stylist Assistant succeed.

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