Costume College FAQs

Costume College® is an annual three-day educational conference produced by Costumer’s Guild West, Inc. to provide educational classes, programs, and tours covering all aspects of costuming. Costume College is currently held at the Warner Center Marriott in Woodland Hills, CA. This is a marvelous facility, with lots of classrooms, sleeping rooms and plenty of space for Costume College to grow.

This page covers general Costume College frequently asked questions. We also have FAQs for:

If you don’t find the answer to your question or need more detailed information, please contact us.

How do I attend Costume College?
Purchase a membership and join us in Woodland Hills, CA! The annual conference is traditionally held in either late July or early August.

Can I get college credits for Costume College?
Costume College is not an accredited college. Costume College is simply the name of the three-day costuming arts conference produced by Costumer’s Guild West, Inc. There are no credits given by Costume College, and there is no official application to an accredited school any of our students could use to apply to their formal education.

Is there a campus for Costume College?
No – Costume College is a three-day costuming arts conference which takes place at a hotel, as many conferences do.

Where does Costume College take place?
Costume College is held at the Warner Center Marriott, Woodland Hills, California.

Can I come to Costume College if I’m not a Member of Costumer’s Guild West, Inc.?
Yes. Costume College is open to anyone who purchases an event membership/ticket (“Tuition”). However, to receive a discount on your Costume College membership/tuition, Time Traveler’s Gala ticket(s) and/or Fantasy Tea ticket(s) you must be a member of Costumer’s Guild West or a CGW-designated sister organization. (Click on the link to see if your organization is a recognized sister group.)

Do I need to buy a Costume College Membership/Event Ticket to get into the Time Traveler’s Gala or Fantasy Tea?
No!  Tickets for the Gala and Tea are sold separately.  You may attend either event by buying a ticket for that event.  See the Gala and Tea sections for more information or contact our Registrar.

Do I need to buy a Costume College Membership/Event Ticket to go into the Marketplace? Is there a separate charge for the Marketplace?
The answer to both is no. The Costume College’s Marketplace (Vendor’s Room) is open and free to the general public as well as to our College members. Everyone is welcome! We do sell “Earlybird” tickets to the Marketplace, so you can be the first one in on Friday afternoon. The Earlybird tickets are available on site at the Information Desk. Earlybird ticket purchase price goes to the Costume College Scholarship Fund.

What is the basic schedule for Costume College?

The following schedule is tentative and subject to change.

  • Information Desk – 7:00 to 9:00 pm
  • Check-In – 7:00 to 9:00 pm
  • Volunteers – 7:00 to 9:00 pm
  • Pool Party – 8:00pm to 9:00pm


  • Freshman Orientation – 8:00 to 9:00 am
  • Volunteers – 8:00 am to 5:00 pm
  • Information Desk – 8:00 am to 5:00 pm
  • Check-In Desk – 8:00 am to 6:30 pm
  • Classes – 9:00 am to 5:00 pm
  • Hospitality Suite – 11:00am – 11:00 pm
  • Early Bird Marketplace – 3:30 pm to 6:00 pm (admission by ticket purchased at Information Desk)
  • Marketplace – 7:45 pm to 10:00 pm
  • Welcome to Costume College Social- 6:30 pm to 7:30 pm
  • Panic Room – 7:30 pm to 12:00 am

Volunteers – 8:00 am to 2:00 pm

  • Check-In Desk – 8:00 am to 3:00 pm
  • Information Desk – 8:00 am to 5:00 pm
  • Costume Exhibits – 9:00 am to 5:00 pm
  • Sewing Retreat – 9:00 am to 5:00 pm
  • Classes – 9:00 am to 5:00 pm
  • Marketplace – 8:30 am to 5:00 pm
  • Time Traveler’s Gala – 6:30 pm to 12:00 am (Admission by separate ticket)
  • Hospitality Suite – 11:00 am to 11:00 pm


  • Sunday breakfast – 7:00 to 8:45 am (No host)
  • Hospitality Suite – 11:00 am to 11:00 pm
  • Bargain Bazaar – 8:00 am to 3:00 pm
  • Information/Check-In/Volunteers – 8:30 to 3:30 pm
  • Marketplace – 8:30 am to 5:00 pm
  • Costume Exhibits – 9:00 am to 3:00 pm
  • Classes – 9:00 am to 4:00 pm
  • Fantasy Tea – 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm (Admission by separate ticket)
  • Costume College Wrap Up meeting – 5:30 – 6:30pm
  • CGW Board Mixer – 6:30 pm to 7:30 pm
  • Tear Down (volunteers welcome) – 6:30 to 8:00 pm


  • LA Fabric District Tour – 9:00 am to 5:00 pm

Can I wear costumes at Costume College?
You can wear anything you like, so long as it’s for a PG13 audience. We do, however, discourage the wearing of costumes while attending classes including the wearing of hoops in classes. We want our students to be as comfortable as possible: fabulous costumes can sometimes take attention away from the subject at hand; space is sometimes limited in the classrooms, and costumes can present safety hazards in certain workshops. Additionally, we advise that our attendees dress in layers, since the classrooms vary in temperature. Costumes are absolutely forbidden on the tours. Please save your costume wearing for the Tea, the Gala, and other social events occurring during the run of College.

What is the “theme” of Costume College?
The theme of Costume College is the focus of the bonus track of classes from the previous year.  It is chosen each year by the Dean. Though many of our students enjoy dressing to the theme, it is not required.

I want to sell items in the Marketplace. How do I go about getting space and information?
By filling out and submitting a Vendor Application from. This form is available in January on the Marketplace page. Please note that the application must be returned to us by the date on the form. Submission of an application does not guarantee a booth. All vendors are juried in each and every year.

Are there any extra fees beyond my Membership?
Some of the classes do have extra fees, ranging from $1.00 to $85.00. You will be responsible for paying those additional class fees.  These fees do not end up in the accounts of Costume College. They are strictly to reimburse the individual volunteer teacher for his or her costs, and go directly from you to the instructor. Also, each Tour has a separate fee, ranging from $25 to $40, which covers transportation and entrance to the tour location. The Gala and the Tea each have a separate ticket.  All fees will be listed in the Registration Booklet you will receive in April after purchasing a membership but before signing up for classes and tours.

In addition to the fees listed above, there are several things for which you may wish to have cash on hand during the conference: a few dollars to pay for handouts in unlimited classes; tips for maids, valets, and bellhops if you are staying in the hotel; Food and beverages, including Starbucks, no-host bar at the gala and the pool party, meals at the grab & go lunch or the hotel restaurant or the fast food & sit-down restaurants across the street; Early bird Marketplace entry; Late registration for limited classes; Raffle tickets at the gala; Bargain Basement; photo gallery photos; and shopping in the Marketplace.

How old do you have to be to register for Costume College?
Costume College does not have a minimum age requirement.  However, all attendees under the age of 18 must present signed permission from a parent or guardian to attend. The form can be downloaded from the registration page. If under the age of 16 the attendee must ALSO be accompanied by an ADULT, who must remain on the premises for the entire time the minor is present. Adult attendents MAY ONLY PARTICIPATE IN CLASSES, LECTURES AND OTHER NON-OPEN TO THE PUBLIC COSTUME COLLEGE EVENTS IF THEY HAVE PAID FULL REGISTRATION FEES. Any attendee under 18, who wishes to attend a Tour must be accompanied by an adult (additional fees will apply).