Ballroom Dance > Amateur costume question

Discussion in 'Ballroom Dance' started by fire_dancer, Aug 14, 2009.

  1. MAC and Nationals (USA Dance) have historically been pretty hardcore about going down the lineups making ppl get rid of sparkly hairpieces (but not personal jewelry (earrings/necklaces/bracelets) which is an exception). It also turns out that also satin = shiny = light effect.
  2. Daphna

    Daphna Well-Known Member

    Thanks for the plug, just to let everyone know, MAC registration is up and running we have a $1000 scholarship for Senior I Latin Champ and its our 20th year anniversary and we hope to make it the best year ever.

    See you in Jan.
  3. NonieS

    NonieS Well-Known Member

    I love MAC.... it's easily one of my favorite competitions of the year :D
  4. Lorelei

    Lorelei Member

    Agree with danceronice that competing in streetclothes or store-bought cocktain dresses was just not my thing when I was in syllabus. I had one custom-made for a little over $1,000 by one of the US ballroom dress making firms, danced something like 10 competions in that dress, including beginer pre-champ. Plus the gown still had resale value, so I guess the cost per wear was between $50 and $100. It was made with pattern fabric, so I felt it stood out. Also, dancing in it felt very comfortable, I never had issues of strepping on the dress, and it did not restrict movement. While I was making it specifically to fit USADANCE regulations, it did not get challenged in NDCA comps either. So I would definitely recommend a professionally made dress for someone who is frequently competing syllabus.
  5. Chris Stratton

    Chris Stratton New Member

    You can often find a collegiate syllabus quality used gown with stones for less than that....
  6. danceronice

    danceronice Well-Known Member

    I don't think I've ever seen a costume challenged at an NDCA comp...I think there are rules about Newcomer only (no costumes) at some competitions, but otherwise I'm not sure what they'd challenge about it. (Not least because the flip side of "NDCA competitions are only in it to make money" is "If you annoy/offend the people WITH the money, they will take their business elsewhere and you will not get any money.")

    $3000 for lessons is all right, but for me, if I am not competing, I'm wasting money taking lessons at all! To clarify: if I wanted to NOT do things like NDCA comps or impulse-buy horses from auction lots 2000 miles away from me (what, he was only a couple hundred and I'm probably going to flip him in a month, if the stars allign-not at a profit, but at least he's not Mexican dog food now), I could probably afford a $3000 dress. I don't have too big a problem (having stoned dresses myself I will happily pay for someone else to do it for me) with the prices or consider them unreasonable (however $4500 for a just-average Latin dress is a bit much-for 4500, I want WOW!)

    Half the fun for me is dressing up in flashy costumes. While I'd probably get out of sylabus faster doing am/am than I am ever likely to in Pro-Am, I just don't see the point. Heck, with The Next Horse (the keeper) while I'm still not going to show, I'm hoping to join a hunt just because I can't bring myself to ride without having excuses to dress up! (I will probably regret this when it comes time to clean and polish my dress boots again, not to mention buy a coat, stock tie, and breeches in the right colors, but oh, well.) For me the show is half the fun, and I'm not getting any younger so why do the version where I have to wait?
  7. Lorelei

    Lorelei Member

    There is no question about that.

    My point was that there is an option between a store-bought dress and a $3,000 dress. It worked for me because I wanted a certain look and feel, and was competing enough to need a syllabus gown often. So it was not a question of finding a cheap dress, but a dress to suit my needs. At the same time, per wear cost was not that much. I realize that might not be a best choice for someone who does not plan to compete regularly.

    (BTW, I thought Yvonne's lilac was very good looking - was it also a custom-made syllabus dress).
  8. Lorelei

    Lorelei Member

    I think there is a restriction for NDCA am/am student competitors, something about not wearing a costume in syllabus.
  9. ChaChaMama

    ChaChaMama Well-Known Member

    LOL! Different strokes for different folks. I know it's probably heresy to say this, but I'd be just as happy wearing a tank top and jeans.

    And I love my practicewear. I recently got this set from Dance America, and I think it is soooo pretty, elegant, and simple:


    But I can't wear that at an NDCA comp, and I get that!!!
  10. and123

    and123 Well-Known Member

    IMO it's embarrassing to watch someone in a $5K costume dancing badly b/c their focus was more on the outer package and not the skill level. But I'm in it more for the joy of learning to dance well than the mindblowing amount of comp prep required to compete at a high level. Plus I've seen too many instances of dancers in simple attire cleaning up in a heat full of feathers, fringe, and rhinestones because their dancing is spectacular. Sure, all other things being equal, appearance will sway the judges. But I hate to see the costume outshine the abilities of the dancer. To expect a newly Bronze-level Pro-Ammer to go this route just rubs me the wrong way. JMO....
  11. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    I tend to agree
  12. etp777

    etp777 Active Member

    Here's another vote along those lines. Simple and black but can dance trumps any 5k dress
  13. Chris Stratton

    Chris Stratton New Member

    My point had been that $1000 withbor without stones does not sound consistent with the claimed intent of costume rules, but isn't a surprising result - special requirements raise prices by limiting used and off the rack options.

    When we last did syllabus Yvonne actually borrowed back a blue ensemble I had made for a friend to wear in bronze (never found the equal of that fabric again). The lilac was made for open, though without stones, but I'm glad if you liked it.

    More generally, I think college comps have better rules because the people who decide them either still dance in their syllabus divisions, or did so fairly recently
  14. Lorelei

    Lorelei Member

    CCM - I love that black ensemble, and the standard skirt in that series is gorgeous as well
  15. TinyDancer109

    TinyDancer109 Well-Known Member

    YES!! It looks really ridiculous to see these kind of folks at competition... you get embarassed for them, and i am sure it looks bad to the judges.
  16. danceronice

    danceronice Well-Known Member

    If the thousand-dollar practice clothes are made of high-quality four-way stretch with a bodysuit and they actually fit and don't look like crap, that involved a lot of labor to make and the raw materials probably weren't cheap to begin with. (There was an episode of Project Runway in season three where they had to make a skating dress for Sasha Cohen, with almost none of them having used materials suitable for moving in an athletic manner. Some managed, some...didn't.)

    I've never looked at the rules for student am/ always seemed if I decided to bother doing am/am while still dancing syllabus, USA Dance would be the more logical place to go. I know for pro/am they really don't seem to care.

    I'm less bothered by people overdressing than people who obviously really liked the dress but should NOT be wearing it--in those cases I've seen some really good dancers who picked dresses that were the wrong shape, color, length, etc. Some that were just 'yuck', others that were "Did you look in the MIRROR before you put that on?" It's not even a size issue--I've seen it with women who are size 18 and women who are size 2. One reason I don't have a ton of dresses besides money is that I really do want at LEAST an "I don't hate it on you" from the pro with whom I'll be dancing while wearing it before I even think about buying it. (I wish I had someone who could do this for me when I'm street-clothes shopping, for that matter.)

    And again, rider background--if you turn up at a horse show in cheap, badly fitted, or just bad-looking kit, no matter how well you ride, you won't place as well. If you show up with the wrong clothes entirely (jeans with chaps and a t-shirt with a schooling helmet) even if it's serviceable, you'll be dismissed from the class for disrespect. You turn out right or not at all, you and the horse.
  17. etp777

    etp777 Active Member

    People definitely need to learn (or have a pro/dressmaker who's willing to tell them ;) ) what is right ofr them or not.

    On the subject of shiny/sparkly/whatever, dept stores might not carry them as much anymore, but H&M, forever 21, wet seal and Filene's basement still definitely all carry them (yes, 3 of those 4 are on way between my office and studio. Plus stopped at filene's to buy new shoes)
  18. Chris Stratton

    Chris Stratton New Member

    Could easily see that for latin, but how much do forever 21, h&m, etc have in rule compliant materials that is of a length and fullness appropriate for standard?
  19. etp777

    etp777 Active Member

    Can't say I really know or care, being a guy who doesn't dance am and doesn't dance standard. :) Just suggesting places for people to start looking. Since you only mentioned issues with clothes at department stores not looking, and not places to find what they need, sure doesn't hurt to give people some other places to look.
  20. star_gazer

    star_gazer Active Member

    So... last weekend my daughter won three rounds of open am std in a practice dress and her grandmothers jewelry and while this might not work at the OSB in few seems okay on the local level.

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