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  1. #1
    Advanced BHUZzer caasious's Avatar
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    Ideas needed for beginner group costuming.

    There are a number of dance schools and teachers in our city.
    Some of them put on annual theater student galas that are tons of fun - just like kids recitals, but with our adult students instead... plus local professional dancers and troupes tossed in the mix to inspire the new dancers to what they "could" achieve someday. Gives the teachers a chance to show off to their peers too.

    Costuming, of course, is required - but up to the discretion of the instructor about style & how intricate they have to be.

    So my dilemma...
    I started teaching an introductory/community level class this past year with a GREAT bunch of ladies. Very enthusiastic. I mentioned one of these upcoming shows to them - and they jumped at the idea of performing!

    But what are we going to wear?
    It's a low key class, about half of them own hip scarves (the rest borrow from my basket of old bits and pieces) and the veils all mine too.
    I don't feel right making them get something at a huge expense they will never wear again. They are all different sizes, and some are quite self concious about their bodies.
    If we were part of "real" dance school - I'd have different expectations, but...

    Oh yeah, we're doing a veil dance so you're mainly going to see the brightly colored veils swirling on stage.

    I'm thinking maybe a black bottom (skirt, pants, harems?), hip scarf, and a black t-shirt/tank of some kind that we customize with glue-on gems.
    Kinda plain (yup) but easy and everyone would be the same so at least it's a cohesive look??

    Other suggestions?


  2. #2
    Ultimate BHUZzer *Shira*'s Avatar
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    Re: Ideas needed for beginner group costuming.

    I like your idea of using glue-on gems.

    A while back, when my students were in a recital, I had them wear a "uniform" of the following:

    1. Black tank-style unitard. They could buy from their favorite vendor. Most opted for Sugar Petals because they liked the mesh midriff, but I didn't require the Sugar Petals model specifically.

    2. Circle skirts, which we made in a sewing party. We used an inexpensive satiny fabric from Hobby Lobby. Each student chose a different color, but since they had the same skirt style, unitard style, and hip scarves, they still looked unified. We chose 2-panel circle skirts, which helped keep the price down by requiring less fabric.

    3. Matching black hip scarves with gold trim, which one of my students found on eBay for $11 each.

    They looked fabulous!


  3. #3
    Ultimate BHUZzer kina's Avatar
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    Re: Ideas needed for beginner group costuming.

    I had the same dilemma recently with my students, we are going to be part of a larger recital. I stated that this was the costume for the recital (black bottom, black top + hispcarf) and they have rebelled. Very respectfully, but it was a rebellion.

    I told them to go for it, if they want to wear different colors etc, they are welcome to. After all, it's their recital and they want to dress up.
    - A deeply desired goal gives context to present experience... M. Stanton Jones

    -Truth is one, paths are many. Sivananda.

    Jemileh's Blog


  4. #4
    Master BHUZzer beafarhana's Avatar
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    Re: Ideas needed for beginner group costuming.



  5. #5
    I could get used to this! rose_sahar's Avatar
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    Re: Ideas needed for beginner group costuming.

    For one of my very begining performances, our teacher has us wear black skirts or pants, a black tank-style shirt, and a hip scarf. It looked coordinated and nice without hurting anyone's budget.

    Lrose Designs has nice, affordable tops and skirts, if you were looking for something more costume-y. have you tried their website? My new student troup just got beladi dresses from Lrose, and loves them!


  6. #6
    tamrahennatx
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    Re: Ideas needed for beginner group costuming.

    Lrose trumpet skirts and half tops with 3/4 length sleeves. If you order as a group, it will be less than $100 apiece. If they continue on with belly dancing, they can use the skirts with bras and belts for a more professional look, and the half-tops can be worn as classwear, or if they decide not to continue, the sets can be resold here on Bhuz with little if any depreciation.

    My students just did their first performance with these sets, along with a coin hip scarf and jewelry and they looked fantastic and felt great!


  7. #7
    Ultimate BHUZzer latriamou's Avatar
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    Re: Ideas needed for beginner group costuming.

    i've seen a beginner group wear t-shirts from the school or dance or teacher and jeans!- yes jeans! all decorated with glitter and glue on rhinestones.. looked really cute. i would rock a pair of those jeans.
    just giving another option, i dont know if everyone can dance in jeans....


  8. #8
    Official BHUZzer maiaraqs's Avatar
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    Re: Ideas needed for beginner group costuming.

    My students will be performing in a showcase event soon; they decided on L. Rose Beledi Dresses (each chose her own color) and Black Coin sashes from Horus & Isis. Half are silver, half are gold. They were willing to spend the $$ to look gorgeous. ..l;, :Awink:

    I think they were willing to spend this because they've been with me for a while and have expressed the desire to perform more in the future; also, the dresses feel more "covered up".

    Best wishes --


  9. #9
    Established BHUZzer Vahana's Avatar
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    Re: Ideas needed for beginner group costuming.

    When my troupe was first forming, I really wanted to keep cost and hassle down because I didn't know how things would work out or even if the troupe would be an ongoing thing. So, we did black skirt of your choice, coin hip scarf of your choice, and a black top of your choice.

    Some dancers chose coli style tops, others used cut off tank tops that fit snug and looked neat. The different color and style hip scarfs looked nice too.

    The great thing is that black velvet straight skirts can be found for about $5 at a thrift store. Plus, some of my students easily sewed black satin circle skirts. Here is a photo of us early on -

    Bringing Sexy Back - tribe.net

    Now, a year later as the troupe has progressed, we are wearing bedlahs and had the utops and gauntlets made by l.rose designs in black velvet.

    Jewels of the North Dancing at Glam at the Oasis - tribe.net

    We take troupe costuming one step at a time. Our next step is to all get matching black skirts. Then, the final step will be to all have Turkish style bedlahs (since those seem to be less expensive.)

    Have fun with this! I was really surprised at how enthused my dancers were about costuming. I think the key is to take it one step at a time to keep it feasible financially.

    Good luck!


  10. #10
    Advanced BHUZzer caasious's Avatar
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    Re: Ideas needed for beginner group costuming.

    Thanks for the input.
    I think we'll go with a black tank (maybe wrap) style top - that way it's also a souvenier of the class they can wear for other things. I'll have to think of some kind of design to have printed on it before we start to bejewel them.

    At least this way, the ones that wish to show their bellies can alter the tops and those that don't - won't.

    fyi - I'm dancing a solo piece at the end of their veil number and plan to keep the class on stage as "backup dancers". I'll be wearing a very full black skirt, red bedlah, and using a set of Jess' double FIRE silk veils.


  11. #11
    Ultimate BHUZzer tahiradancer's Avatar
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    Re: Ideas needed for beginner group costuming.

    The only thing I woudl suggest is that you try to coordinate the hip scarfs and the veils to match. this is less distracting to the eye. Every one can have a different colour just their veil and the hip scarf matching.

    {{{HUGS}}


  12. #12
    Established BHUZzer basil1's Avatar
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    Re: Ideas needed for beginner group costuming.

    The Sharifwear "bellydancer" camis are cute. They can be worn down for a covered look or tucked under for a half top look. They already have the rhinestone on them!
    L Rose used to have a beginner package for around $100 that included a top, harem pants, a skirt & a veil which I think is a bargain. Don't know if they still do??


  13. #13
    Advanced BHUZzer rassicahl's Avatar
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    Re: Ideas needed for beginner group costuming.

    We've done black skirts, black tanks, cholis, leotard tops (their choice), coin belt, make-up, hair done, and jewelry. We do the nursing home circuit so it's fine for us.


  14. #14
    Official BHUZzer gwyncara's Avatar
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    Re: Ideas needed for beginner group costuming.

    Quote Originally Posted by basil1 View Post
    L Rose used to have a beginner package for around $100 that included a top, harem pants, a skirt & a veil which I think is a bargain. Don't know if they still do??
    Yes, they do still offer this.


  15. #15
    Mega BHUZzer Reinaa's Avatar
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    Re: Ideas needed for beginner group costuming.

    I have a group of teenagers I teach. I had my sister-in-law make some black harem pants for them. We measured their high hip, inseam, hip to ankle length and ankle size. They came out perfect! Then we purchased black one strap bra tops with matching hip scarves from Isis Imports. They looked good! It's always nice to have a friend or family member who sews. We paid for the material and then gave her $25 per pant. We ended up spending about $75 per person. We lucked out!


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