Now, these custom and unique costumes are not just given out. Solo costumes have to be earned. Most dance schools have rules that you have to be at a certain level of dancing. Beginners often compete in a simple blouse and black skirt, and I was no different. I essentially looked like an overgrown six year old at my first feis, (maybe I should have adopted a more Riverdance-esque costume) but I didn't spend too much time at the beginner levels (because I started in advanced beginner) and placed everything up to novice in one feis. This meant the hunt was on.
Prior to entering the competitive world, I had already been trawling through Dance-Again daily in search of The One. I was slightly overwhelmed by the range of styles, colors, and patterns available. I went on a spree, favoriting dresses that I loved and could possibly see as The One. I quickly realized that this was probably not the best option because I now had about thirty dresses saved, and all were my absolute favorite. Some parameters were needed. I finally decided it had to be under $500, my size, and not look like a clown barfed on it.
That narrowed down my favorites considerably, and I printed out the remaining five to see what my TCRG thought. She quickly looked over my print-out and reasoned with me that I really don't need the $800, never been worn and newer style dress as a novice dancer. We decided on The One, a traditional three panel in shiny bubble gum pink with silver, white, and black appliques. With all of my favorite colors and the amount of shine on it, I realized that this was The One from the start, and just needed someone to affirm that my love for this dress was not in vain.
With less than a month before my next feis, it was imperative that I get it as soon as possible, and lo and behold, the owner of The One lived in the area and was attending the feis. I met up with her the day before and picked it up from the hotel, lovingly securing it in my car as I drove back home to admire it and wear it as much as possible before I had to be at work. At the feis, I proudly wore my new dress around the hotel. I felt like a real dancer. There was finally a dress that defined me as an individual among the hoardes of dancers, and something I could deem as my good luck charm. That day, I won my reel competition, making that my first prizewinner level dance.
My pink dress stayed with me through novice and prizewinner. In that year-long period, I doted upon it. I added a hundred rhinestones for extra shine. I kept it neat by trimming threads. I safe guarded it in my dorm room between competitions. I made sure it didn't smell by storing it with dryer sheets and giving it the occasional Febreeze shower. This dress attended my first parades, my first few performances. It was a sad day when I had to part with it to continue it's life journey to New York.
Goals: Smooth out connections between steps
Days till NANs: 155