Elois Jenssen

Elois Jenssen
Born (1922-11-05)November 5, 1922
Palo Alto, California, U.S.
Died February 14, 2004(2004-02-14) (aged 81)
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Occupation Costume designer
Years active 1943-1986

Elois Jenssen (November 5, 1922 – February 14, 2004) was an American film and television costume designer. She earned Academy Awards nominations for design work in the Cecil B. DeMille production Samson and Delilah (1949) and for her work on the Walt Disney Studios film Tron (1982). [1]


Elois W. Jenssen was born in Palo Alto, California. She attended the Westlake School for Girls before moving to Paris to study fashion at The New School's Parsons School of Design division. She returned to California after the start of World War II and enrolled at the Chouinard Art Institute.


She began her film career as an assistant costume designer in Hunt Stromberg's production company and received her first screen credit designing Hedy Lamarr's gowns for Dishonored Lady in 1947. She was designer on the film Lured starring Lucille Ball and thus began an association that ultimately lead to designing for I Love Lucy. In 1948, her design for a white fleece overcoat, electrically heated by batteries carried in two side pockets (with an extension cord that could be plugged in on planes or trains), was featured in a futuristic fashion show sponsored by the Los Angeles Fashion Group.[2]

In 1951, Lucille Ball approached Jenssen and asked her if she would be interested in designing costumes for a new situation comedy she and her husband Desi Arnaz were readying for CBS. Under exclusive contract to 20th Century Fox at the time, she was unable to accept the offer, but after leaving the studio to freelance, she spent a season designing clothing for Ann Sothern on Private Secretary, then contacted Ball to see if the position on I Love Lucy was available. She was hired at $100 per episode, considerably less than her feature film salary, one week before the filming of the 1953-54 season began, and the following season her salary increased to $150. When she held out for $200 the next year, cost-conscious executives at Desilu replaced her.[3] Her later television credits included designs for Julie Newmar in My Living Doll and Eleanor Parker in Bracken's World.

Additional credits

Awards and nominations


  1. "Oscar-winning costume designer". Variety Media, LLC. March 23, 2004. Retrieved April 20, 2016.
  2. Time, November 3, 1947
  3. The Story of I Love Lucy (by Bart Andrews, E.P. Dutton & Company, Inc., 1976, pp. 88-89, 123-124) ISBN 0-525-14990-2
  4. "Costume Design (Color) for Samson and Delilah (1949)". 23rd Academy Awards 1951. Retrieved April 20, 2016.
  5. "Nominees - Costume Design for Tron". 55th Academy Awards 1983. Retrieved April 20, 2016.
  6. "Best Costumes WINNER, TRON: Elois Jenssen, Rosanna Norton". Saturn Awards for 1983. Retrieved April 20, 2016.

External links

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