It is with great sadness that we announce the death of Madeline Gorrill who for many years was Wardrobe Mistress at The Loft.
Madeline first got involved with the Loft in 1957 with a play called ‘Life with Father’. She assisted with costumes for the production. They needed a wedding dress for an actress and the only one available did not suit, so Madeline used a plain cream Edwardian dress, scattered single velvet parma violets over the skirt and train and trimmed the bodice and sleeves with narrow violet ribbon.
Her work began in earnest as assistant to Wardrobe Mistress Maureen Davis in 1959, after the first fire, when we started to make many of our costumes, designed by Mary Varcoe from the RSC. Madeline had a team of seamstresses, who were superbly talented, making costumes, hats and parasols for period plays, often cutting and making simply from a sketch. Mary Varcoe taught Madeline and the team much about how to made costumes look authentic, to age them and dirty down material. She was so sad that nearly all of these beautifully made costumes were lost in the second fire.