As there is no Tango in Eastbourne, I now have the time to finally learn Belly Dancing (see post in my other blog). So far I have been to two classes, which have been more like a workout at the gym. I will be organising a private lesson to get a better grip on technique. I admit that after two classes I am totally hooked!
I wore tracksuit bottoms and a t-shirt to my first lesson as the teacher said to wear something comfortable. Everyone else wore leggings, harem pants, or a skirt with a cropped or wrap top and a jingly hip scarf. So I ordered my hip scarf and teamed it up with a nicer pair of track suit bottoms and a brighter t-shirt for my second class. Everyone else was dressed as before or more so. One lady had an interesting tribal looking skirt with feathers in it. I felt so overwhelmingly underdressed – like being the only person with clothes on at a nudist’s beach.
So, today I went to my local dancewear shop to purchase some comfortable clothes for belly dancing and to really get me into the mood. I now have a pair of wide legged dance pants with a roll-down waist and a crop top with a frilly sleeve (both in black) and a red tank top. My belly is set to be exposed along with the rest of them! My hip scarf is purple, so I will have to buy another one in red to go with the red top. 🙂 There was a lovely purple chiffon skirt with sequins that would look lovely over a pair of leggings and would go with my scarf, but that will have to be another day! Thank goodness I don’t have to buy shoes! The upside to all of this spending is that I can use the pants for Tango as well as Salsa and Ceroc!
While trying on clothes, the saleslady and I had a conversation about the different garments we wear for each dance and the amount of money we spend on them. A lot of my dance clothes came from various charity shops and I can happily say that I didn’t have to spend too much money to look good.
For Tango, I like to dress up. Most of my Tango clothes are work clothes or going out clothes that can be doubled up as dance clothes. These dual purpose skirts/dresses are elegant and yet allow my legs to move freely. If I need a new dress or skirt, I always ask myself if I can Tango in them. If I can’t then I don’t buy it. I don’t have a lot of closet space, so my clothes need to be versatile. When I wear my Tango clothes I feel very glam and elegant.
For Salsa and Ceroc, I like to dress down a bit. By that, I mean I might wear jeans or a skirt with a funky, yet lightweight top. Salsa is more energetic than Tango and I tend to glow. It is easier to bring along a few spare tops when one is feeling the heat. Because of the moisture issue, most of the tops I wear are very inexpensive so I don’t feel so bad if they get ruined and I have to dispose of them. When I wear my Salsa/Ceroc clothes, I feel a bit wild and carefree.
When we don our dancing clothes we become transformed. It is as if a switch is turned on in our brains and puts us in dance mode. Like Clark Kent morphing into Superman we become the Superheroes of the dance world. Even though we know that it really isn’t the clothes that make us good dancers (like go-faster stripes on a car doesn’t really make it go faster, really), if we look good we feel good, and that can give us that extra bit of confidence to relax and enjoy ourselves.
I know that buying new belly dancing gear will not make me a better dancer, but at least I will fit in with the rest of the group and that will really help me get into the spirit of things. The fact that they are more comfortable than what I had worn previously will make a huge difference and might help me bring out my inner goddess!
So, what do you like to wear when dancing and how does it make you feel?