At Satin Stitches Ltd, we pride ourselves on producing hand-crafted, couture-quality custom performance costumes: right here at our showroom/production facility in suburban Minneapolis. Our talented fashion/costume designers have an important role in perfecting your custom designs.  We do not cut corners on the quality, fit or construction of your custom designed team dance, cheer, skating, and show choir costumes and dresses. You can only appreciate and understand our superior Satin Stitches quality if you see and wear our costumes, yourself. So, don't hesitate to call or email with questions about what we can do for your performance team!

Deborah J. Nelson

Deborah Nelson of Satin StitchesDeborah J. Nelson founded Satin Stitches® in early 1978, as a one-woman venture after working as a Fashion Designer/Patternmaker for a high-end woman's apparel company for five years in Minneapolis, MN.

By 1979, Deborah added a team of  costume design professionals to help create the very best custom dance performance costuming available. Satin Stitches moved to its current location in 1989, and expanded to double the space in 1994. Although many changes have occurred at Satin Stitches in its more than 40 year history as a high-quality, custom dance/performance costume manufacturer, the company still remains true to its beginnings, by consistently creating both completely original and customizable costumes for all types of performers including individuals and groups of any size.

Costume Design Process at Satin Stitches

Deborah’s 45+ years of professional design, fitting, alterations, and patternmaking experience hails her as a leader in the industry. A Bachelor of Fine Arts (Major: Fashion Design) graduate and former instructor at The Minneapolis College of Art and Design (MCAD), Deborah continues to share her knowledge and experience as both a speaker and writer on topics related to the design, selection, and care of performance costumes and uniforms. Her articles and designs have been featured in magazines including Dance Spirit, Dance Teacher, Productions Magazine, and other national publications. Deborah also presents informational seminars at various dance conferences around the country and served on the Editorial Advisory Board of Dance Spirit Magazine for its first five years. Deborah has been blogging her performance costume expertise for over a decade.


Mercedes Bergman

Mercedes 2019

As Director of Operations, Mercedes oversees production while continuing to work with clients as a designer and CAD patternmaker. Mercedes was first drawn to the apparel industry for the challenge to incorporate art with functionality. She joined our Satin Stitches team in 2017 after completing the Apparel Technologies program at MCTC. You can find Mercedes’ independent design work featured in Minneapolis runway shows and print publications. We are excited to have Mercedes’ perspective and expertise in her position with our design team!


Our talented sewing and embellishing staff has been trained under Deborah to maintain our high standards, to create the very best in custom performance costuming.