Emily Laurelle Tappan is living proof that an article of clothing can change your life. While pursuing a B.A. in Studio Art from the University of New Hampshire, she visited Virginia and witnessed a stitch-for-stitch reproduction of a boned bodice being created by the exhibitors at Colonial Williamsburg. In the winter light streaming through the glass of the millinery shop windows, she imagined herself transported through time. Ever since, she has been enthralled by garments’ intersection with history, art, philosophy, and storytelling.
She has since worked for the Virginia Shakespeare Festival, the Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation, Colonial Williamsburg as a historical interpreter and stitcher, and the Williamsburg Players as a costume designer for Chicago and Annie. She is thrilled to be drawing, painting, cutting, sewing, and teaching her way towards costume design at VCU.