Ballroom Dance > Practicewear - I just don't get it.

Discussion in 'Ballroom Dance' started by dancinrina, Aug 14, 2008.

  1. dancinrina

    dancinrina New Member

    Perhaps I'm being stupid but... why would anyone shell out $150+ for practice wear? I saw Chrisanne dresses and DESI and Espen - the list goes on - but I just can't see why anyone would spend that much on a dress that looks like something you can get at any "young" store or most lord and taylor's or macy's for less than a quarter of the price. And honestly, it's not like the "dancewear" dresses even have a built in body suite - in fact, as far as I've been able to ascertain, they do not.

    Which brings me to - why do you need fancy dancewear? I've never come in a T-shirt and jeans but why go out of your way to buy something special when a regular skirt and nice top will do? Or tight fitting pants for that matter.
    theAnnelis likes this.
  2. _malakawa_

    _malakawa_ New Member

    maybe because somebody likes to spend money.

    if I'll like something i will buy it, if it is expensive, I'll try to buy it (spend less money for something else ...)

    but i make my dresses and my practice wear so i don't care. :cool:;)

    if i see a model that i like i make it myself.

    just an example - 4 years ago i saw a beautiful boots for $900. somebody will say that i am crazy, but i bought that boots because they are good, beautiful, comfortable .......
    Sunsetdancer likes this.
  3. njdancegirl

    njdancegirl Active Member

    Some have body suits built in...just got one recently from Mirella ballroom collection that does. I do lessons in practicewear at times, but I've used for social dancing...some can even be used for showcases/competitions.
    Sunsetdancer likes this.
  4. TAK

    TAK Member

    Yeah man. I'm with you. I usually practice in a tank top and either a skirt (not made specifically for dancing) or jazz pants. Maybe it's because I'm in college, but I see a lot of people who do show up to practice in very casual clothes, and I don't see what's wrong with that as long as it's not a social dance or party.

    I did spend some money on a set of practicewear, but that was to wear in syllabus competitions, not actually for practice.
  5. Laura

    Laura New Member

    You don't, just like no one needs Prada shoes* or an Armani suit. But it sure is nice to have, especially when going to a coaching with a very top coach, or "dressing to impress" for a higher-level try-out.

    I practice in a pair of trousers (my current favorites are from Banana Republic and also Limited) and a close-fitting top made of stretchy material. I could (and have) worn the exact same thing to work, or on the plane, or shopping.

    (*except me)
    Sunsetdancer likes this.
  6. syncopationator

    syncopationator Active Member

    Why do soccer, football, baseball players or any other athlete wear athletic wear to practice? Why don't they just wear bermuda shorts and a nice T-Shirt???

    I'm not saying you should shell out more than you are comfortable spendin on practicewear, but if your question is about why wear practice wear instead of regular clothing well, that's my answer.
  7. Laura

    Laura New Member

    Well, kids and other people with no money will go play soccer or basketball or whatever in whatever they have on...random shorts and a tank top or t-shirt.
  8. Becca

    Becca Active Member

    If I see someone wearing something and looking absolutely awesome in it, then I want some of that for myself!
  9. syncopationator

    syncopationator Active Member

    very true.

    I guess you should wear whatever makes you comfortable.
  10. Because I wear my dance clothes for many many years versus the fashion clothing which I wear 10 X less often ?

    I also wear practice clothes to try out and if I go to comp probably stone some of them and use it there too.

    Per wear it is so much cheaper than my other clothes plus makes me more motivated if I look nice while doing my movement !
    CCdance likes this.
  11. Ithink

    Ithink Active Member

    $150 is IMO an outrageous amount of money to charge for these practice skirts, I agree. In addition, I've yet to try on a Chrisanne skirt that is long enough for me (I have really long legs) so what is the point of buying something for that much money that also looks ridiculous on? Sometimes, when I go clothes shopping to regular stores I am on the lookout for similar skirts and have purchased a few of VERY similar ones for around 20-30 bucks each. BUT, in general I don't like practicing in skirts and I've been told that lessons in standard aren't good to take in a skirt anyway because it makes it impossible for a coach to see what you're doing with your legs... And they are there to see how you move and correct it. So, even the skirts I bought I rarely wear.

    That said, if someone has money to burn, then I don't see any reason why they couldn't or shouldn't buy the outrageously overpriced practice wear... After all, there are people out there who spend $500 on dinner... Me, I'd rather spend any extra money on lessons although I rarely seem to have *extra* money;)...
    theAnnelis likes this.
  12. Some guy

    Some guy New Member

    If you can buy clothes that make you feel good when you dance in them and the clothes don't hinder your lessons (show body lines well) then all the better for you.

    A lot of clothing stores are offerring dance wear just as good as, or even better, than the dedicated dance companies, especially when you take price into consideration. Ladies seem to have a lot more options these days.

    Has anyone tried asking "Lulu Lemon" (not sure if that's the name, I've been there only once) to start making ballroom dancewear? I know they gear all their stuff for dance and movement (they give dance teachers a discount!). I see all the Dancing with the Stars coaches wearing their outfits all the time. I know you can also submit your designs and ideas to the store. I bought a workout shirt from there which I wear to dance: it's awesome because it's made with some special silver thread that's naturally antiseptic. So two hours of heavy sweating and the shirt still smells as good as new!
  13. hereKittyKitty

    hereKittyKitty Administrator Staff Member

    I think it has to do with the custom of ballroom dancing. Ballroom dancing is very traditional, they don't even like it when you wear jeans at a comp.

    For standard-I will shell out $100.00+ for a practice skirt, but I wont go past $120. I love the way the material and the weight of the material feels. I have had my current practice skirts (with exception of 1) for over a year. So they last a long time. As far as latin skirts go, I purchased a couple of skirts at a department store and paid maybe $10.00 each. I buy practice shirts at the mall.

    I used to take lessons and practice in nice dress pants. One day on a coaching lesson, I asked my visiting instructor if it was important to wear practice wear to a lesson. She stated that she preferred it. When I inquired why, she told me that if you ever take from an English coach, the custom is wear a nice skirt and blouse for the lady and shirt with tie for the gentleman. So best get used to it.

    One other thought- The skirt contributes to the look of "movement". You don't get this with pants even in Latin.
    ballroomconvert likes this.
  14. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    I always tried to dress up for our coaches as a matter of respect ...but alot of my lessons were in FP's living room and he was energy conscious so it got hot...we both generally wore whatever we pleased and I loved at NP's place I try to be mindful of the fact that folks will walk into that studio and have certain expectations for comps...if it is day time I am wearing jeans...I have shelled out enough to wear what I like...for the evening I will get formal
  15. hereKittyKitty

    hereKittyKitty Administrator Staff Member

    Also- As far as cost goes-
    I used to work for a company that imported Chrisanne practice wear. What they had to pay customs was outrageous. I remember we were charging $180.00 for a practice skirt and that was barely enough to cover our costs bringing it in.
    ballroomconvert likes this.
  16. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    yes, regarding price, I have one very expensive practice skirt...I have never worn it
  17. syncopationator

    syncopationator Active Member

    I use a pair of their pants for practice. they make yoga wear.
  18. dancinrina

    dancinrina New Member

    See, what I mean is, I have a very nice practice skirt for latin that I bought at a NY and Co clearance rack for a whooping $6.00. Thus, I don't see why people would spend the extra $144 dollars for a chrisanne or whatever.
  19. ChaChaMama

    ChaChaMama Well-Known Member

    I like my Chrisanne and Dance America practicewear. It sometimes makes me feel a little more motivated when I'm wearing a skirt that is flippy and latin-y and body flattering. So I'm with you there, dancingirldancing!

    I don't always wear that stuff. I have a couple tops I got pretty cheap ($20-30, I think) at OSB. I also sometimes wear a latin skirt with tops from Ann Taylor Loft, or Victoria's Secret, or Baby Phat. And sometimes I go all casual and just wear a tee and shorts to our local studio. Occasionally, I have been running to the studio from a work obligation and am wearing a blouse and a suit skirt. It depends!

    I will also second the poster above who pointed out that if you are dancing USA Dance comps on the syllabus level, practicewear can be a great choice for competition, since you need to avoid anything with "light effects," which can exclude quite a few otherwise appropriate mainstream store outfits.

    I could probably name a hundred consumer products that make less sense to me than nice dance practicewear actually designed with dancing in mind.
  20. emeralddancer

    emeralddancer Active Member

    I think a lot of times if you purchase higher ended products ... like coach as an example ... you are getting the value of your dollar so to speak.

    Another thing my hubby taught me, bless his soul, is to buy things that will last. I love clean, classic lines and look, which tend to cost more. SO I tend to shop higher end for everything, from makeup (MAC, MUF), to clothing, shoes (steve madden, aldo,), purses (coach, LV), etc ... also most of the higher end things have guarantees (ie: coach, if it gets damaged you can send it in for repair and all it costs you is the postage)

    So goes the same for dance wear. Much dance wear clothing is specifically designed material wise to last a long time, take a beating, handle the on going wear and tear or practices, material to is made to help (believe it or not) combat perspiring overly much, etc ... Example, dance tights and fishnets cost something like $22.00 US here in MD at the dance stores. I can keep the same pair for over a year with regular use. If I buy fishnets say at macy's or hot topic, they are of a much more flimsy material, maybe will last two wearings, aren't "tight", etc ...

    So in the long run ... I may spend $150 for a practice skirt that will last me a year or more. Say spending $30.00 on 5 skirts that may last only a few months.

    Does this all make sense? I can tend to be WAY to wordy ... sorry.

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