Looking for a costume? Look no further.

Stacy Sammul

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Camelot Costumes LLC is a local gem here in Freeport. If you haven’t stopped in to peruse the many fun and unique costumes, you should. Owner, Linda Foat, runs the Highland Theater’s Costume department and designs and dresses each of our actors for every performance. The Highland costume shop is filled with treasures from past shows and gorgeous garbs just waiting to be worn. The birth of Camelot Costumes was conceptualized because of Linda’s heavy involvement in the theater.

After receiving her Bachelors of Fine Arts in performing arts/costume design from Rockford University she became involved in the theater department here at Highland. Due to lack of budget, Linda began using her own resources to create costumes for shows and then keep them afterward. Costuming can become very expensive very fast and soon Linda’s husband, Merlyn, told her that she had to come up with a way to start recovering the funds that she had poured into the theater. This is when she thought about opening her own costume shop.

On September 28, 1987, Linda opened the doors to Camelot Costumes with only 6 costumes to rent out. That year was the only year since opening that she has rented 100% of her costumes. Her shop now houses well over 3,000 and it is unimaginable that she could rent out 100%. The store is organized by time periods and themes making it easy to find whatever your heart desires. Linda has just about every movie/TV, book, and cartoon character, from famous musicians to a pirate to an ancient Roman goddess, she has it all. Some of her personal favorites are Joseph’s coat from Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Julia who is a civil war authentic ballgown, the Marquis and Marquissa (both won international awards), and a vampire couple of noble birth. Linda has made sure to prep her shop with all of your Halloween necessities to make for a haunting good time. This year’s popular costumes are Day of the Dead, Wonder Woman, roaring 20’s, and this year has been marked by the year of the witch. All of Linda’s costumes, accessories, and shoes are for rent for prices ranging from $35-45 and up depending on the extravagance of the costume. And if the costume that you love is slightly big, no worries, Linda is on hand for a speedy alteration. Last Halloween she had my pirate corset taken in before I could even get my boots off!

(International award winning Marquis and Marquissa costumes.)

Linda is somewhat of a celebrity in the costume industry, not only does she have a long resume of awards both nationally and internationally, but she also has held several positions in the National Costumers Association (NCA). Most currently she is serving on the board of directors for the organization, 2015-2017 she served as immediate past president, 2013-2015 as president, 2011-2013 as Vice President, and served on the board of directors from 2008-2011. Linda explained what the NCA was, “The National Costumers Association is a network of costume shops across the United States, Canada, Mexico, Australia, India and the UK. We offer support and educational opportunities for our membership as well as scholarships to students pursuing a degree in costume design. We also offer our membership a Buyers Group that offers a discount to our members.”

This year marked 30 years of business for Linda and her crew at Camelot Costumes. Although Linda has received offers from other communities to move her costuming services, she has decided to stay loyal to the community that she has called home for so many years. Highland is lucky to have such an amazing woman running our costume shop, her designs have dazzled our stage for almost three decades. So, stop on by to show your appreciation for her service and while you’re there you can take a look at the unique, one of a kind costumes that Camelot Costumes has to offer. Camelot Costumes, 1321 S Demeter St in Freeport, across the street from Little Cubs Stadium.

(Pictured from left to right: Addison Cross and Wesley Bennehoff wearing authentic 1960’s Beatles inspired costumes, groovy man, Addison and Wesley reenacting the famous scene from Titanic in their replica costumes, famous couple Joe Dimaggio and Marilyn Monroe in her famous pink dress modeled by Wesley and Addison, and finally Addison and Wesley transformed into a noble vampire couple complete with a deluxe 360 degree cape made in Transylvania.)

 

 

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Looking for a costume? Look no further.