Western Costume Turns 100 Years Old

On this day 100 years ago, the costume shop that has made the clothing for some of your favorite movies and television shows opened. Western Costumes was formed on June 30, 1912 by L.L. Burns and Harry Revier to supply Hollywood, which was just getting into the motion picture business, with costumes, stages and props for its films.

The story behind its formation is remarkable. A Western was being filmed in Hollywood and Burns, a former Indian trader living in Los Angeles, remarked to the man in charge about how awful the Indian costumes looked. William S. Hart, the director and great cowboy actor that Burns spoke with, ended up hiring him to outfit the Indians. Soon, Burns had a growing business as word spread and the Western Costume Company was formed. And the rest was history.

Over the years, Western Costume would be involved in providing pieces for numerous shows, including classics like the Wizard of Oz and Gone with the Wind, and modern shows like Mad Men. The story of Western Costumes is recapped in this Los Angeles Times article and need not be repeated in full here.

Funtober readers with grand costume plans, take note. You do not have to limit yourself to the costumes mass produced by national costume manufacturers. If you have a sketch and the money, Western will make your idea into a costume for you to wear. Isn’t that cool? It might be a bit more expensive, but you too can have a costume made by the people who provide the wardrobe for Hollywood movies.

Or, should you want to implement your idea at a more reasonable price, you can probably find someone on the internet who is willing to make your made-to-order costume and ship it to you. Hopefully, one day, such a person will leave their website address in the comments and in return find a thriving business filled with orders from Funtober readers.

Indian Chief

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