Follow the Thread

a textile & costume history blog from the Design Center at Thomas Jefferson University

Meet Elissa Lopez


Hi! My name is Elissa Lopez and I’m majoring in Fashion Design in hopes of becoming a costume designer out of college. I’ve always been creating since I was little, trying every medium under the sun, but fashion was always the one I came back to. I love the process of figuring out how to translate my ideas into wearable designs and motifs, and blending the obvious ones with the subtle. The wide range of hobbies I’ve had has given me a broad set of skills that I like to pull into fashion to create something new. Whether it’s fabric manipulation, unique applique, or a crazy silhouette, I always aim to create something that no one has seen before.

Growing up constantly watching films, I was intrigued by the behind the scenes of it all, which is how I discovered that costume design is an actual career that I could pursue. I love the thought process that goes into designing these costumes, especially for ones that are replicating historical dress. That’s why I’m so excited to work at the Design Center where I’m constantly surrounded by real historical pieces that I can interact with and use for reference or inspiration.

In my first year at Jefferson, I was really able to showcase myself as a designer through my projects and build my research skills in developing and really pushing my ideas to a deeper level. One project I did was inspired by the locations in the movie Twilight.  I researched the Olympic Peninsula in Washington and pulled various elements from the area to work into my Fall/Winter collection. Another project I did was inspired by orcas, as I am naturally fascinated with them.  The research for my collection included images of how they interact, their environment, and how they look. Now, in my second year, I’m excited to build further on those skills and see what I create next.

I’m very involved on campus in various clubs and organizations, so when I do have some free time I love to read and be outside. I love being outside whether I’m sitting outside reading a book, chilling with a cute beverage, or just getting some work done. However, when I have the chance, I love to paddleboard! Being out on the water is so calming and allows me to disconnect from the world and get in touch with nature.

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