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Linda & Helen. Click to veiw more students class attire.

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What Do I Wear?

You DO NOT have to show your belly if you don't want too.
The revealing cabaret costume of bra, belt and skirt that most people think of when "Belly Dance" is mentioned, is but a very small, and recent addition to the identity of this dance. There are so many costuming tradition's related to "belly dance" that there is one to suit every body shape, every personality and all degrees of modesty. So bare your midriff only if you are happy and comfortable in doing so.

General Attire
When you come to a class you need to bear in mind that you will need free range of movement for every part of your body! So don't wear anything to tight - leggings or a long skirt are ideal. You are welcome to come along wearing as little or as much sparkly stuff as you like, so do dress up if you want to! Dressing up is always optional though - so don't feel you have to if you don't want to. For the first few weeks of any new beginners class people tend to come along quite conservatively dressed, but as soon as they realize they can dress up in pretty or sparkly things, the local charity shops are soon ransacked for such items!

Feet / Footwear

You will need to bring some light pumps or dance shoes (Ballet or Jazz shoes are ideal) or socks with grips on. I don't allow students to dance in normal socks because of the risk of slipping. Trainers tend to be to heavy and cumbersome to dance in - think light and flexible but with good grips.
Due to variety of reasons I now state that dancing in bare feet is done so at your own risk. It is the preferred state of many dancers (including myself, I find dancing in shoes near impossible) but you must except the risks involved, I do not have the control over the environment needed to make this absolutely safe.

Other than that the only thing you will need is a light scarf to tie around your hips, but I always bring a huge bag full along to class, so you are always welcome to borrow one of mine.
But you will probably soon become addicted to the lovely sound of a coinbelt or chain. These represent a dancers dowry - before there were bank accounts dancers used to sew the coins they were thrown for their art onto their clothes for safe keeping, when a dancer was rich enough she could take a husband.
The weight of the coins helps you to locate your hips to shimmy and move them better. - I have a few to lend out so that you can get the feel of them, but they do get rather heavy in mass quantity so I don't carry too many spares. You can find plenty of places on the net to buy them, or you can view our own selection here. I'm happy to bring a selection along to class for students to buy, if you request it.


See Also:
What Happens In A Belly Dance Class?
So who does Belly Dancing?


© Copyright Kookie Kaftan 2002 All rights Reserved

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