costume designer, Los Angeles, 1954 -
From "The Memoirs, Chapter Six" -
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.
* * *
Finally, we are including the following SPECIAL
SECTION to note that Karolyn Kiisel can do anything she puts her mind to,