We Are Open for Business!

Though a global pandemic may have curtailed our face-to-face operations, La Gazza Pazza is committed to offering the same quality service our loyal customers have come to expect from us.  Most of our regular venues have been canceled or postponed; however, we continue to build inventory and explore exciting new designs.  Please don't hesitate to email lgp477@up.net for your historical and theatrical costuming needs.  We look forward to seeing you on the road once more, as soon as it is safe to travel!

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We are designers and purveyors of quality historical and theatrical clothing…a small cottage industry making its home in the beautiful Upper Midwest. Our area of specialization encompasses the Viking Age through the era of Elizabeth I, although we enjoy creating costumes for 18th century and Victorian reenactment, fantasy designs, and just about anything else you can imagine.

We are committed to creating clothing that will make our patrons look and feel fabulous! These are not “costumes,” but real garments for real people that will withstand close scrutiny and everyday wear. We stand behind our products and will perform on-site repairs and reasonable exchanges. Best of all, when you purchase one of La Gazza Pazza’s creations, you are supporting New World artisans.  We use no foreign sweatshops, and you won't find our products on Amazon.  Beware of cheap knockoff items that fall apart after one or two wearings!  By paying just a little more than you would spend on one of the items offered as "Halloween costumes," you can have a quality garment that is built to last.

We love a challenge and are happy to help with your period-themed wedding or other special event.

We offer a basic line of shirts, chemises, bodices, skirts, trews, cloaks and other simple garb, but most of our high-end items are one-off. Couple of reasons: (1) each garment is individually crafted, not factory-made; and (2) being a small shop, we can’t afford to buy an entire bolt of red velveteen at one shot! If you contact us with your preferred color/s, we can always scan and email you pictures of currently available fabrics and trims, or find that special item for you.

Recently I visited an email list where a lady lamented that “no one was doing authentic historical designs for the faire trade any more.” Fear not, good lady! While we carry a few fantasy designs, and some historically-inspired ones adapted for comfortable modern daywear in 80-90 degree heat, we love historic costuming research, basing our work on contemporary portraiture and reliable scholarship.

I made my first costume at age ten when my cousins and I gave my mother a classical Greek-themed birthday party – I showed up as Hermes (my cousins were Aphrodite and Poseidon). Later, as an East Coast ballet dancer, teacher and choreographer of modest means, I had to learn the ins and outs of dance costuming: what drapes well, moves well on stage and looks good under stage lighting on a budget. I designed and built classical tutus for my small company. No one else wanted to tackle them. If you have the gumption to do these, you can do just about anything, I figure.

When I retired from full-time teaching due to a chronic knee injury, it made sense to pursue my second love of theatre. In 2002 Washington University in St. Louis awarded me a master’s degree in drama, with a concentration in Elizabethan/Jacobean theatre and costume technology. Since then I have made cotehardies, courtepys, cloaks, doublets, paned trunkhose, Norse tunics, Franciscan habits, wizard robes, Tudor gowns…the list goes on.

Please browse our gallery and selections, and feel free to contact us with any questions you might have.  Also, please do not pin our designs on your Pinterest page without proper attribution, or without asking permission!  We are glad you like our designs, but please respect the artisan.