Some may wonder what it takes, and specifically how one gets successfully involved in the fashion industry? Faction Magazine recently had the pleasure of interviewing Erica Sword, the costume designer for Quixotic Fusion, who led us through her journey of experiences in fashion. Initially, Erica had the full intention of becoming a fiber artist after graduating from the Kansas City Art Institute with her BFA, but over time her work evolved into costume. Her next step was graduate school at UMKC in the theater department; after earning her masters she started teaching at the University of Central Missouri. While at UCM she met Daniel Parks, which led to her involvement with Quixotic Fusion. The pairing was a fantastic fit for both parties involved. Erica's interest in costuming for a circus complemented Quixotic's penchant for brilliant costume. Most individuals that work in costuming generally go the direction of television, opera, or theater. However, Erica always had the desire to "run away with the circus", which probably started when she had a summer experience with Feld Entertainment, the parent company to Ringling Brothers.
Erica's design inspiration comes mainly from nature, fashion history, and architecture. Continuing her career, Erica hopes to cement her affiliation as the resident costume designer for Quixotic into a full partnership. Expanding into the circus arts community is a huge opportunity to make fabulously beautiful costumes. Erica explains, "Many people might say I’m lucky to earn a living doing what I love to do and working in the arts, the truth is, in order to be truly successful you must be disciplined and work everyday to refine your chosen craft". She couldn't have said it any better!
Written by Amanda Fenimore