When to ignore Coco Chanel

She may have been the queen bee of fashion in her time but her famous quote,

“When accessorizing, always take off the last thing you put on.” – Coco Chanel

really doesn’t hold well as advice for belly dancers.

Coco Chanel

Coco Chanel


In fact, I would go as far to recommend most dancers that are starting out in performance to do the exact opposite!!

“When accessorizing for performance, always add at least one more item of fabulousness” – Jade

The reason I say this is because the majority of dancers I see at student Haflas and amateur performance evenings are somewhat underdone.

I certainly was when I started out, I was so clueless that I turned up to my first performance in exactly the outfit the teacher said – without any make- up, jewellery or accessories!

When I started looking at photos of myself performing I began to notice the difference between what I looked like and what the pros look like and accessories were a big part of what was missing.

We are accustom to seeing ourselves in our every day street wear and stage make-up and jewellery can look so over the top. There is a tendency to put something on, then think you look silly, and do Coco Chanel and take it back off again. I think the biggest classic is to do nothing with your hair and make it look like the costuming ends at the neck. This is easily fixed with a little flower, scarf or some of the endless hair accessories cheaply available on eBay. For tribal I would say add 2 extra accessories! For oriental – if you have a pro costume you will need less but earrings, a ring or 2 and a necklace and bracelet are pretty standard. You don’t want to look like you just chucked your outfit on and ran out of the door.

Rachel brice dvd cover

Rachel Brice – Let’s count the accessories ….

My favourite accessory is almost always a necklace, bold necklaces are my signature look, I am pretty partial to upper arm accessories too and they have the added bonus as being perceived as being exotic.

Yes, there is often 1 or 2 women at an event that have poured half a bottle of eyeliner on their face and worn every item of jewellery in their possession but I find they are the exception not the rule and honestly at least they gave being bold and commanding a try.


What’s your favourite accessory?

Do you agree with Coco?

Please comment below?

Our first concert – a sneak peek at the sold out performance

The Bellingen and Dorrigo classes of Jade Belly Dance came together in December to put on a spectacular concert night. We were joined by the lovely ladies of Masana Belly dance from Grafton and we had a great time. It was a night for all ages. It was held in the small town of Dorrigo NSW at the super cute Dorrigo Drama Club Theatre. We were utterly stunned when the stage manager whispered to us that it was a full house – we hadn’t even had much time to advertise it!

Putting on a show is a lot of work and I have so much respect for those that do it regularly! I am putting up these photos for my students that have been away over the holidays and haven’t yet seen them. There is some excellent photography by Bruce Thomas and a few pics by Tammy Mills-Thom so I hope my regular readers don’t mind having a look too. Photos of the evening are available for $10 for disc (it includes many more photos than these in higher resolution) contact me on jadebellydance@hotmail.com if you are wanting some to keep.

If you are reading this before the 31st of January please take a few moments and vote for Jade Belly Dance in the favourite blog and Teacher category for the top dance blog awards. I put in a whole heap of effort to get comments on a previous post and it turns out I only needed 10 and the competition was a second round of voting! Doh! So if you haven’t already please, please, please vote for Jade Belly Dance in both categories by clicking this link.

Did you like the photos? Please comment below

Body Art for Belly Dance – Henna and Jagua

Good article about Henna but I particularly liked the bit about “Jagua” at the end. I have never heard of this temporary dye that looks like real tattoo ink! Has anyone any experience with it? Comment below.

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