Your dancing speaks volumes, but your costume can also affect the judge’s final decision. I have seen many a great dancer in the wrong costume and it was terribly distracting!
Not everyone has the perfect body; as a matter of fact most of us don’t! Even those who we think have one, THEY don’t think so! We all have our flaws and good costumers will always try to disguise them or minimize them for us. As women,we always want to look great no matter what we wear. We have all made purchasing errors and hung our head in shame when we saw the garment on us in a picture!
My biggest concerns are costumes that do not fit properly or are not ‘age appropriate”. No one wants to get older, but we do and should do it gracefully and tastefully! Be aware of trouble spots like jiggly triceps, backs with an extra roll or that tend to wrinkle or gather when cinched into a tight fitting garment, or dimpled thighs and lose gluts. I, personally, have experienced these things first hand! Everyone’s first thought is to lose the weight and then you won’t have an issue, but that’s not always possible in three weeks or less! (Don’t even start the diet pill thing, all the weight comes back with more along for the ride when you stop taking them and don’t even get me started on the side effects!) If you’re going to lose the weight, do so slowly and with a good nutritionist and a few sessions with a personal trainer.
The dress designers I know have been in business for many years, are familiar with specific trouble spots, have the ability to cover and conceal and are very concerned with your appearance on the floor, because their name and reputation is on the line also. The problem occurs when corners are trying to be cut and someone with less experience is putting something together at a discounted rate.Wardrobe malfunctions abound and the outcome is disastrous and sometimes very embarrassing!
Ta ta’s should not be spilling out from the top or sides of the costume, skirts should cover both the back AND the front, tushies should be tucked nicely into a pair of full coverage trunks that refrain from sneaking into the middle (I have had a small hook sewn into my trunks that I attached to my fishnets to keep them down. It really worked and did not tear up my hose!), and waist lines should never spill over the edge of your dress (no two pieces if you do not sport a six-pack). Fishnets are not the most comfortable things to wear, but make the legs look fab on the floor! Some girls have worn regular sheer to waist pantyhose underneath their fishnets to help ease the discomfort and say this works pretty well. It is a bit warmer, but sometimes the ballrooms are cool enough.
I was never ‘waif-like’ and never will be. I have a tush that will never be tiny and a top I always wished had been bigger. I have a great back, a long neck and legs that look good up to mid thigh, so my dresser always emphasized the positive and down-played the negative (my top was always double padded to balance out the bottom). I always wanted the tiny, fluffy, skimpy, sexy dresses, but knew the outcome would not be what I saw in my mind’s eye (not to mention my dresser would never have let me walk onto the floor that way!)
Be honest with yourself then talk to several designers to get their input and advice and to see how you feel about working with them. Don’t be afraid to mention your concerns about your body. They will understand and work with you to make you comfortable. Having a great dress you feel makes you look like a princess or a diva changes your whole attitude on the floor, and can make the difference in your marks!