Fashion designer, costume designer, Los Angeles, 1954 -



From "The Memoirs, Chapter Six" -


            In the costume shop of the Napa Velley Theater, I went to work with a couple of young assistants they found me among students in the area.  One was a dingy girl named Adrian and the other a sharp, fun girl named Karolyn Kiisel, who ended up doing lots of sewing for me that season and would go on to be my costumer for years to come, a famous designer in LA and a long-time friend.  She always said that I taught her to sew fast.




            In 1974, she designed the costumes for "Aimee and the Pagaent of Salvation," below left with cast members, Devadassi as Sister Emma and Joy Phipps as Aimee Semple MacPhearson.




            In 1979, Karolyn designed the Fashions of the 70's for "Bill Wolf's Salute to the 70's," South of Market Cultural Center, San Francisco.  Below, she models the 70's "see-through" jeans.










            Below, in New York, she contributed to Maria Manhattan's "The Box Lunch," Wooster Street, Soho, 1981.




            In 1981, Karolyn came accross a funky, brick building near the garment district in downtown Los Angeles, which appeared abandoned except for the Chinese Daily News on the ground floor.  She convinced the owner, Mr. Yashiki, to rent her the top two floors.  She moved in and set up her costume design studio.  She would have it for years.












            While visiting Oaxaca, Mexico, she organized a fashion show called "Jacaranda," featuring some of her latest creations.  We printed up a flier, below, August,  2005.




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            Finally, we are including the following SPECIAL SECTION to note that Karolyn Kiisel can do anything she puts her mind to, below.






Puttin' On The Dogg

Petcetera Originals, Pasadena, California, 1993









Karolyn always took a lot of pride in the "Party Animal," below.




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            My dog Dottie had one of the above original "Fairy Princess" fashions, of course, and I still have it.  In fact, I recently used the tiara during the shooting of our Teatro Vivo's sixteen-part photo tableau of Samuel Beckett's Happy Days, below.




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