Los Angeles in June

June is here! I am so sad to miss these upcoming events (Dax and I are in Europe) but if you live in the area, you should try to make it out to one of these!

June 10, 2011 – 6:00pm – 10:00pm
Celebration for Frank Lloyd Wright
at the Hollyhock House

The Aline Barnsdall Complex
Barnsdall Art Park
4800 Hollywood Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90027

Please join us for a Birthday Celebration of America’s most celebrated architect, Frank Lloyd Wright. Friends of Hollyhock House is embarking on a major fundraiser for the next two to three years to restore and revitalize the landscape in and around Frank Lloyd Wright’s Hollyhock House, commissioned by Aline Barnsdall, to the original specifications of Lloyd Wright, son of Frank Lloyd Wright and father of Eric Lloyd Wright.

The Art Deco Society of Los Angeles and Friends of Hollyhock House Invite you to a 144th Birthday Celebration for Frank Lloyd Wright at the Hollyhock House. The evening includes tours of the first floor of the Hollyhock House ( photography permitted), swing and sway to the tunes of the Art Deco era featuring Jim Ziegler’s Swingsations and Wendy Rea, raffle, silent auction, food trucks, wine, birthday cake and swag bags. Eric Lloyd Wright will be in attendance and for contributions to the Landscaping Fund of more than $250 you will receive a copy of the book Panorama Wright; for contributions of more than $1000 Mr. Wright will personalize your book.
$65.00 Tickets on sale now at Brown Paper Tickets
Tickets will be available at the door for $80.00
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June 11, 2011 – 6:30pm – 11:30pm
Vintage! An Evening to Benefit the Italian-American Museum

The Italian Hall
424 N. Main Street
Los Angeles, CA 90012

An event presented by the Italian-American Museum, Vintage! will feature live music and dancing to the swinging sensations Big Lucky (as seen on HBO’s Entourage), delicious cuisine and classic cocktails by a celebrated chef and mixologist, and a performance by the 1920s revue the Atomic Cherry Bombs. The event will also include a costume contest and fashion show with designs by reVamp Clothing, and a presentation on the museum’s design and historic preservation endeavors.

Proceeds benefit the Italian American Museum of Los Angeles and ongoing preservation efforts of the building in which it is located, the historic Italian Hall. Constructed in 1908, the Italian Hall is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is the oldest remaining structure from the city’s historic little Italy.

1900-1940s attire encouraged.

The Italian-American Museum is pleased to offer Art Deco Society members, supporters and social networking “friends” discounted presale tickets ($55 instead of $65 and $75 at the door) to anyone who mentions the ADSLA.

To purchase tickets, or to register for the costume contest, call (213) 485-8432 or visit www.italianhall.com
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Art Deco Walking Tour
of Hollywood Boulevard
Saturday, June 18, 2011 – 9:00 a.m

Beginning in front of the Pantages Theatre
6233 Hollywood Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90028

The Art Deco Society of Los Angeles is proud to announce the debut of a brand new walking tour of Hollywood Boulevard, where the film industry took root and flourished, defining glamour, modernity, and fun for not just the country, but the world.

Hollywood Boulevard is a microcosm of one of the great “golden ages” of L.A. architecture—the post–World War I boom that from which Art Deco, that forward–looking, sleek and iconic style, emerged.

On this tour you’ll see famous Hollywood and Art Deco masterpieces (The Egyptian Theatre and the Pantages Theatre) as well as unsung beauties that you might have walked by. You’ll see palaces of commerce along with pocket–sized examples that housed—and continue to house—a local businessman’s dream. You might think you know Hollywood Boulevard, but we bet we’ve got some surprises for you!

The tour will begin in front of the Pantages Theatre and end at Hollywood & Highland. Explore the neighborhood block by block to see what the area was, what it is, and what it will be!

By special arrangement, and in an ADSLA exclusive, we’ll take you inside the glorious Pantages Theatre, the historic Egyptian Theatre and the très glamorous Hollywood History Museum (the former Max Factor beauty palace).

This is one tour that you won’t want to miss! Be the FIRST Decophile in your neighborhood to experience Hollywood Boulevard, ADSLA style.

Open/General Public ticketing begins on Monday, June 6.
Non–Member (Open) Tickets: $15 per person (beginning June 6)

HAVE FUN!!!

Score at Betsey Johnson!

I am blessed to have a Betsey Johnson outlet (somewhat) near my house. I’m even more blessed that I happen to walk into the outlet on my way to Santa Barbara the same time they were having a fabulous sale!!! I wish I bought everything but here is what I decided. The biggest score was a pair of 225$ heels on sale for 80$$. I love these babies and they are surprisingly comfortable. The ones I own have a gold metallic heel and flower on the side of the plastic but I couldn’t find a nice picture:

They remind me of vintage “slippers” I’ve seen stars wear in movies with their silk bath robes. So glamorous!

I also think I found my new obsession. Betsey jewelry! Oh man she has some of the most precious and girly earrings. I should have bought more but this is what I got:

These aren’t so vintage but man they are cute!

Sweat Pants Almost Killed the Lindy Hop

A really famous lindy hopper once said to me, “Sweat pants almost killed the lindy hop.”

You may be thinking…WTF?

Think about it though, when swing dancing originated, everyone was dressing up and trying to look good. It was a night out, to say the least. Saying “Sweat pants almost killed the Lindy Hop” may sound completely ridiculous, but I’ve been thinking about it recently.

Let me bring your back to my beginning. I vividly remember the first dance I was invited to. I had learned a few moves at my High School swing club and now it was time to go out dancing. However, there was a big problem.  I couldn’t go cause I didn’t have any vintage clothes. How funny is that. I actually didn’t go, and that next week I was compelled to go buy some dress pants, suspenders, and some shoes. Ridiculous…………..ly Awesome, now that I think about it. Not the suspenders, but there was a time where you actually had to think about what to wear. Fashion mattered and peer pressure combined with the image of Swimg made people care about what they went out in. Then everything changed.

If you have been dancing for a while, you might remember years back when people were wearing sweat pants to social dances. I remember, cause I used to wear them!

Take one guess at what type of pants I am probably wearing!

It was right around the time when social dances were being moved to dance studios because real venues were kicking Lindy Hoppers out for bringing water bottles. I am surprised that we didn’t end up with yoga mats and stretching sessions by the end of the night talking about how the only important part of the dance is how it feels.

What Happened?

Why did many people stop dressing up? Why did I stop dressing up?  Obviously many continued to keep swing stylish, but those aside. What tipped the decline of swing fashion?  How did all this happen?  I don’t really know, but I speculate that maybe workshops, with 5 hours of classes a day, caused people to start dressing in athletic gear. Fair enough, but this sort of “comfort first” mentality started to trickle into the social nights. Soon the line between what was appropriate blurred when it came to style. Personally, I know I also started to focus more on just the dance, and not what the dance was part of. I think this happened for many people. We became so focused on Lindy Hop as only a dance and forgot the bigger picture of Jazz Culture, Music and Fashion and History.

I really think this affected my dancing, and probably a lot of other people. With this more casual approach to what we wore, came a more casual approach to how we danced, how we looked while dancing, and the tempos we preferred to dance to. Groove music soon took over, the stretched swing out died, charleston was “not cool”, and live music wasn’t worth the extra 5$ cover charge.

Is Fashion Part of Understanding the Dance?

I wish I got my act together much sooner when it came to fashion. It all started to click when when I realized that Lindy Hop was part of something bigger…that there was more to the dance then just learning how to dance well.

Lindy Hop, if removed from the influences that were present when it was originally developed, is awkward and lacking. As I get better at dancing, I enjoy listening to better dance music. As I listen to better music, I get better at dancing. As I move better and swing harder, I want to dress more vintage. As I start to dress more vintage I begin to move better and swing harder. Funny how this all comes together.

My Lindy Hop is so much more complete now that I am 1) dressing better, 2) playing swing music on my guitar, 3) listening to better dance music and 4)watching more old clips from the 20s, 30s and 40s. I can finally see how it all works together and feeds the rest. Over the past few years, I have seriously become more interested in all things that swing; looking beyond just the dance technique.

So, in case you missed the message going round town; Classy Is Cool. Vintage is cool. I even feel it may be a critical part to understanding the dance better.

If my wardrobe progressed along side my dancing over the past 10 years I would be set, unfortunately it hasn’t and now I am having to catch up.  I wish I could go back in time and dress well so that all the pictures floating around didn’t look so silly.

More and More People Are Dressing Well!

Over past few years, I see more and more people bringing style to their Lindy Hop. I am also starting to recognize the people who have kept Vintage Influenced Style alive over all the years and taken it to respectable  levels. I am not saying you should dress vintage, but if you think that lindy hop looks better in a T-shirt and Jeans over being decked out is some classy attire…I am asking you to think again. Would the Nicholas Brothers be a legend if they wore sweat pants? Would the Spirit Moves documentary look so badass if they were wearing polyester comfort clothes and Adidas shell toes? Hellzapoppin in jeans and t shirts? Seriously…?

Time and Place: There is a time and place for all attire. If you can rock that outfit, do it. Just be aware, and don’t let laziness send you out looking 1/10 as good as you could with a bit more effort.

A quick shout out to Peter Loggins, who is the ultimate male icon of Swing Dance Fashion. You would never find him in a cheap suit, and can go through every single photo for as long as he has been dancing and you will see him dressed well. He has heavily inspired me to get my shit together. Thanks Peter!

Here are some pics I grabbed of some couples who always inspire, letting the world know that “Classy is Cool!”

I may be totally wrong, but dancers dress WAY better in Europe. I think we need to pick up our game here in the states. LA used to own swing fashion, now I go out and things sure have changed. Game ON!

Where are you with your fashion? Have you been oblivious so many years like me? Have you been rocking vintage the whole time laughing at us who dance in jeans and t-shirts? Do you think that not vintage attire looks better for Swing? Are you aware, but to lazy to dress the part? Do you shop at Mens Wearhouse, wear tennis shoes with your suits and spike your hair?


Why Men Should Wear Heels (How Wearing Slick Leather Shoes Made Me A Better Dancer)

This post is is related to Sarah’s post on why ladies should conquer wearing heels. I would like to elaborate based on my personal experience why I believe learning to dance in Hard Leather Dress shoes dramatically enhanced both my dance technique, leading technique, style, range of variations and best of all….how I looked in a suit. 😉

I used to be ANTI-slick shoes. Of course I was; I couldn’t slide for sh*t and doing a swing out felt darn near impossible without slipping around like Bambi. Seriously, what lead wants to look like Bambi? Exactly. The immediate disappointment always kept the good ol’ slick shoes in hibernation. Not to mention, I had subtlety convinced myself that dancing in street shoes or moreover “stickier” shoes was the cool thing to do. Obviously, for me, those days are long gone, but if you are finding yourself in “similar shoes” then I insist you read on and hopefully get the motivation to eventually conquer the slick’s.

I now dance 95% of the time in my Hard Leather Dress Shoes. The remaining 5% I use hard rubber Dress shoes, when I need extreme control and power with no room for error. An example would be doing a routine like “Jitters” where we are dancing full stretched Swing Outs at over 300 bpm. Here we are all in hard rubber shoes. The girls are also not in Heels. This is an example of that remaining 5%, at least for me personally.

Before we go on. I want to define some stuff for the purpose of this post.

  • Technique – Body Movement, Rhythm, Ability to Lead, Ability to Follow, Style, Creativity and the ability to do all things dance related. Lets lump it all into one. Better Dancing happens when all this stuff is done better. Therefore, when I say better technique, think better execution of all of the above. Add to the list if you wish. 😉
  • Slick Shoes – Hard leather dress shoes, sueded shoes, something that is slippery. They might even be rubber on a super slick floor. The idea is they slip, slop and slide.
  • Sticky Shoes – Tennis shoes, Rubber soles, stuff that doesn’t allow for decent slides.
  • Nice Shoes- Shoes that are comfortable and look freaking awesome with what you are wearing.
  • Lame Shoes- Shoes that are not optimal for your feet, look really bad with what you are wearing or both.

How Slick Shoes Can Help You Improve Technique

I feel like swing dancing is a constant balancing act. Finding balance between my partner and I while tensions are constantly changing is a enormous task.  Sticky Shoes make this easy for me to cheat. I simply grip the floor with my feet and use my muscles to compensate leading to more contractions and less stretches.

With Slick Shoes, I can’t grip, squeeze and compensate because I will slip or loose control. When I notice a major loss of control, loss of rhythm, loss of power I know I am not using my body as well as I could be. This confrontation with personal failure pressures me to be in better positions where my body weight balances the tension between my partner and I. On top of that it pressures me to pulse better in order to release excess tension to avoid slipping and loss of Rhythm.

In Sticky Shoes, due to the fact that I can compensate for worse body movement and positions with excess muscle tension, arm leading and floor gripping, I don’t have the opportunity to meet MR. FAILURE. This is what slowed down my ability to improve the quality of Rhythm, Body Movement, and Body Leading for many years. When the current system works, I.E. IS NOT FAILING, I don’t fix it. The reason is not that I don’t care, but I don’t even know what to fix because I can’t see or feel the problem!

It is completely possible to dance with amazing technique in Sticky Shoes. It is also completely possible to dance in Slick Shoes with horrible technique. What I am trying to say is that when things appear to be working, they don’t get the attention needed to fix or improve them. I see it all the time when I teach private lessons. I point out stuff to work on, and while I am there reminding them it is ok, but soon after the students revert to habit, cause habit works. However, habit won’t make you a better dancer! Change nothing, and nothing will change. Change is the difference between where we are now, and where we hope to go with our dancing. Moving on…


The First Step

I will assume that dancers who have not mastered Slick Shoes have more control in Sticky Shoes, (assuming they are not too sticky and inhibiting for movement). That is the way it is for me and many others that I have spoken with. If you have been dancing for a while, you have probably obtained a certain level of rhythm, control, and fun. Let that be your mental standard for comparison. This level of yummyness is what you must try and achieve when putting on Slick Shoes. This is only the first milestone, but if you can get this far, you will have made lots of improvement in your technique. FOR SURE!

Learning to do everything you can do in Sticky Shoes while using Slick Shoes is not easy. It requires change! You can’t go about it thinking “the way I currently do things is awesome!”. Honestly,  If you put on a pair of Slicks, and you are killin it, then congratulations, you probably have great technique. Chances are, it won’t end up that way. It didn’t for me, but I focused on results and changed my dancing dramatically to get them. Now when I put on a pair of Sticky Shoes, I know I am using better technique, and when I put on my Slicks…well, this is what it currently looks like. Not to mention, Sarah is killing it in her Heels as well! Regardless, I still confront failures in my Slicks that teach me more about the types of adjustments I need to make to become a better dancer. Now that I am comfortable, relaxed and stable, I am on the road to discover more ways to take advantage of what Slick Shoes will let you accomplish.

Read on if you like…

More Reasons to Wear Slick Shoes

Slides

Sliding is probably one of the most unique aspects of lindy hop that sets it aside from other partner dances. I watch old clips from the spirt moves in awe when I see all the slides and the juicy rhythmical variations that slides can produce. It is unfortunate the more people are not doing it.


Warning! A slide is not a move! Sliding or “micro sliding” is a way of moving. Every single step is slide-able. Moreover, sliding for me is much more a function then it is a style, it just so happens that it looks badass. If you think of learning a slide/move, like you learn a new variation, you will never get the bigger picture of what sliding is all about.


Health

Slick Shoes are much easier on my knees and related joints. When I lindy hop, I do a lot of circular/pivotal movement on the balls of my feet, and slick shoes allow for the least amount of resistance for my knees and ankles while doing this. I used to mostly consider the cushiness of a shoe and jump into a pair of tennis shoes for the squish to relieve my back/foot pain. I did this without considering the toll it will take on the knees and related joints. I have learned over time that Slick Shoes are more forgiving on my body, especially since I can finally use them. Most of all, what I really learned was that good body movement has helped me maintain the best possible heath and sustain 8+ hours of dancing a day.

Compare it to Typing: Learn your home keys. Learn to type properly. You may struggle for a while but avoid long term injury that is associated with “bad typing” technique. Same goes for dance.

Learning to move well in slicks, makes your technique better, which makes dancing easier, which makes it less damaging to your body, and your partners.

If you need more comfort, buy nicer shoes, put insoles inside or experiment with 1 of the many options for increasing the support and comfort of your Slick Shoes.

Style & Fashion

After Sarah’s post, I was shocked at how ANIT- STYLE some people are when you must sacrifice a little comfort. WOW. I say, drop the excuses, and find a way to look and feel good. End of story. There is nothing more disappointing stylistically then going from head to toe on a decently dressed man(or woman) to find a pair of tennis shoes at the bottom of what could have been a great out fit. Just wear some stylish shoes and ditch the excuses. I think dress pants and suits look silly with Tennis shoes. It’s not as cool as the real deal or a stylish fusion dress/street shoe. If you need help here, just ask, I have been through more shoe drama then the average debutante living in Manhattan and more back pain than most UPS drivers.

Shoe Options

#1 Hard Leather, Heeled Dress Shoes

  • Option 1 – The Pro Build: All Leather Sole, All Leather Heel – This is the ultimate social dancer build. Allowing for the maximum slip slop potential and equal consistency along the whole shoe. Most Nice Dress Shoes, come with a rubber or partial rubber heel. You will need to take your shoes to a shoe smith (cobbler) and get a full leather heel installed. Costs about 25-50USD depending on how much leather is used and how good your shoe smith is.
  • Option 2 – The Standard Build: All Leather Sole, Rubber Heel – Most nice dress shoes are built with a rubber heel now-a-days. The rubber heel adds a little more stability when you drop the sticky heel, but the inconsistency isn’t worth it if I have my pro builds with me. I feel it is more constricting since it is less predictable. I wear this shoe when I teach and walk around all day and have to go inside and outside and don’t want to carry another pair of shoes.
  • Option 3 – The Illusionist: Rubber Sole, Hard Leather Heel – This is really interesting and rare build that few use. I think Sackarias mentioned he also like this build. Of course there are probably more… This is a dress shoe, with a rubber sole backed with and all leather heel.  The rubber sole gives you that extra grip and control while allowing for fatty heel slides. This is a novelty build, which is fun to play with but probably not the best if you are only going to have one pair.

#2 Hard Rubber, Heeled Dress Shoes and Fusion Street Shoes – There are a lot of shoes that are designed to look great with dress pants and suits that are built with hard rubber buttons. I have a few pairs of shoes like this for the rare performance that requires more control and of course requires that my outfit still looks good. 😉 I used to really blow big time. I regret looking back at old videos when I am dancing in some stupid tennis shoes or street shoes that just look lame with my suit. Vincenzo, he always did it right, he just put rubber on his Stacy Adams, looked twice as pimp and got the grip he needed. Thanks for showing me the light Vince.

#3 Sueded Tennis Shoes – This might appear like a good stepping stone but personally, it is not even worth the time. Yes, they are slick, and will show you some flaws. However, I can find nice dress shoes that are just as comfortable, look nicer for swing dancing, and look much better with my suits. Dress shoes also last longer and have a heel. I can also wear my dress shoes outside without feeling guilty that the sole is going fall apart.

Side Note: I feel that when we wear tennis shoes, we easily gravitate towards jeans, track pants, UFO pants, raver jeans, Modrobes, and all pants that go with shirts that make outfits that aren’t super cool for Vernacual Jazz, Balboa, Swing, and Lindy Hop. I have been there. Wore all that stuff at one time, but personally my view of what is cool has totally changed.  Some of you may hate me for saying it, but sweat pants almost killed the lindy hop. Regardless, feel free to wear what you like. I say “time and place”, and following that you will probably know when it is best to bust out what will get you more compliments and less funny looks.

Practicing

You are going to want to wear what you practice in to a social dance. It is your comfort zone. So don’t get comfortable in shoes that you don’t plan on wearing out or you will always find an excuse to wear those sueded tennis shoes, regular tennis shoes, and cluade hoppers. Next thing you know, you will probably end up going out in sweat pants and track pants if you are not careful. ;

If you wear Jeans, sueded tennis shoes might look fine,  but personally, I have pretty much stopped wearing jeans while dancing. For me, they are so much more uncomfortable to dance and sweat in. *Skinny Jeans are my personal exception, cause I love skinnies and the clean lines! 😉

How to Start Wearing Heels

Start low: A misconception that happened in my last entry is that if you want to wear heels when you dance, they have to be high!!! This is not the case at all. Most of men’s dress shoes have a heel on them like this pair of Stacy Adams:

So your first step to wearing heels? Pick a pair of shoes with a low heel! They still feel really different than tennis shoes but are risk free and have much more class. Here are a pair of shoes from New Look I bought recently in Ireland. Not sure if they are going to last long but I like them so far:

Here is another low heel option:

Buy a pair of wedges: The great thing about wedges is they give you more support which allows you to increase your heel height. I bought these BORN shoes a few years back at a Macy’s and I love them.

This might be as high as you go when wearing heels and that is okay!!! Now that you have picked your shoe here are some tips to make them feel better!!!
1. No matter what you get, it should feel comfortable in the store! I’ve made the mistake before thinking that I could make them feel good by just dancing on them a few nights but your feet will not last a few HOURS dancing in uncomfortable shoes. They should also be of amazing quality. What you stand on all day should not be one of the things you buy cheaper to save a few bucks.
2. Insoles. I can’t dance in heels without insoles. Some women can but there is a little too much pressure in heels with no support. I always buy my heels a half a size bigger and put in an insole (bring the insoles with you shoe shopping. Something I learned from Jo Hoffberg). If I know the shoe is going to stretch a LOT sometimes I wait to break them in and when they get a little too loose for my feet I put in insoles and they fit again!
3. Avoid Blisters: It’s sometimes difficult to wear socks with your heels. When it’s not part of the look I wear nylons. I am always covering my feet somehow and I rarely come across a blister.
4. Avoid Sling Backs: I don’t recommend sling back heels/wedges because (in my opinion) they don’t feel that secure to wear. I want my shoes to feel glued on my foot and sling backs make me worry they are going to fly off or my heel is going to slip.
5. SUEDE THEM! or rubber them. This is supper important! I have some heels with their original leather bottom. Some heels with suede (just make sure you brush them regularly) and some heels like my wedgies I have rubber. This lets you handle any floor situation so you don’t hurt your knees or slip a lot.
6. Know when to stop. I usually wear heels in the beginning of the night and sometimes I get to a point where I just can’t dance anymore in them so I switch to lower heels/flats or tennis shoes. Dancing in heels in the beginning is going to be more tiring because your legs have to work harder…but I have found that this makes me much stronger and so when I DO put on tennis shoes, dancing feels like taking a walk! lol
7. Dance with leaders you trust. As you are figuring out how to dance in different shoes, dance with people you know will take care of you. I was lucky to have Dax to dance with who knew how to challenge me but still keep me safe and catch me the few times I let my heels get the best of me. hahah (I’m kinda joking on that last one…kinda)
8. Get foot massages! I read a comment in my last blog about this and I knew I needed to add this tip!! Dax and I get foot/body massages a few times a week…It so good for your body and it’s really not that expensive. We go to thai town or somewhere with a lot of massages and end up paying 20 buck for the hour.
9. Know this: IF YOU CHANGE NOTHING ABOUT YOUR DANCING, NOTHING WILL CHANGE. Dax says this a lot but I found this completely true about my experiments with heels. If you choose to dance the same way (the same style and same flaws) then you will never feel the benefits of changing shoes. You will find that you can only dance in your Keds and everything else is impossible because you are not willing to change you body and movement to adapt to new circumstances. Be open and listen to your body. You shouldn’t feel like you are falling over in 1 inch heels. Experiment; be safe; and have fun!

Why Women Should Wear Heels

Growing up in the Lindy scene I have heard so many times how women should wear heels because that’s what women are suppose to do. We are women and women wear heels. Now I loved that traditional ideal but I never could get past the FEELING that being in heels gave me. Every attempt I had made to wear heels I felt off balanced; unstable; and constricted in my movement. I loved the idea of heels but came to the conclusion they were not for me. Since then, I have spoken with many other women who have said the same thing. It wasn’t until about a year ago..maybe even less…that I came to a realization.

Heels did not feel good because they showed me all my flaws.

When I wore heels I felt weak and unstable in them. Why? because I hadn’t figured out yet how to put my body in strong enough positions that let me be stable. I felt constricted. Why? because I let the idea of being in heels freak me out, causing so much tension in my body I couldn’t move with ease like I can in the comfort of my Keds.

So the reason I wear heels? Because they help keep me in check. I feel like I become a better and stronger dancer when I wear them. Wearing tennis shoes for a long period of time actually cause me to develop bad habits. I’m an not saying you should throw away all your tennis shoes! I love giving my feet a break while I’m teaching on my feet all day and  I love being in something with more cushion when I practice ariels. I think there is a time and place for everything. All I am saying is don’t just look at the fact that heels make you look like a classy woman but look at how heels can change your dancing for the better.

And this will take time. I made myself wear heels every social dancing night I could for two months before things started clicking for me. It was a stressful and disappointing time but I stuck with it and am so grateful. For those of you ladies still thinking heels are not for you, I encourage you to take the challenge and spend some time in them. They will not only compliment your vintage dresses much better but they might teach you a few things :)

Next post I will write about all the ways I have made dancing in heels more comfortable!

Stay Tuned!!

Ladies and their heels!

Sara Deckard

Nina Gilkenson

Alice Mei

Sharon Davis

And here is a video of a recent performance Dax and I did at Rusty Frank’s 13th Anniversary at Stompy Jones! I am wearing a pair of Remix shoes that I had sueded the bottom. After this dance I realized my next challenge to overcome is tight skirts!!



Katja Hrastar and her pants

Not only is Katja an amazing dancer, she also is one of the most stylish ladies in the scene. This is a little old news in my world but I thought I should give a shout out to the one who’s inspired me into getting nice trousers.

After meeting her and seeing this outfit I set out to find myself some nice trousers. I ended up buying an AMAZING brown pair from Zara. They cost me 80 dollars and are completely worth it. I really wanted to spend the extra money to get a thick and soft pair of pants. One that is flowy but won’t show your sweaty crack after a night of dancing!! I wear them casually when I’m teaching and dress them up when I’m at the night dance.

My next thing I have been planning to copy from Katja is the Coco Remix shoes in RED. I fell in love after seeing her wear them in Slovenia. Unfortunately they are not being made anymore however I just spoke with the owner today and he said he might put them back into production at the end of the year!!! I might get another chance!

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