I recently stopped by the SoHo Ballet Beautiful studio to take a class taught by none other than founder Mary Helen Bowers. Dressed in a sleek black leotard with a bow-tie closure in the back and a pair of tights, I quickly remembered why I love the art form so much. Not only does it mold your body almost perfectly, but it also integrates fashion and personal style. This got me wondering how an adult should approach dressing for a ballet class. Luckily Bowers knows a thing or two about the subject and was lovely enough to answer all of my questions
Scroll down for the Q&A, and be sure to pick up your favorite pieces for your next class.
WWW: Are there any don'ts when it comes to ballet attire?
MHB: In the dance world, yes. But when it comes to fashion, I absolutely love to see the playful ways people style their ballet ribbons, warmers, and tights. There's a big difference between preparing your hair or shoes for a performance versus a workout, of course. A workout is the perfect time to experiment and have fun!
WWW: Are there certain pieces that can help enhance your performance?
MHB: It's helpful to wear tights or leggings to see and feel a true bend and stretch through the knees. Our ballet slippers have a lovely suede sole that helps grip the mat but can also slide gracefully along the floor for standing work, and legwarmers are an essential to keep the muscles warm and flexible during workouts. They're also great with a skirt once the cold weather comes.
MHB: Our ballet slippers and shoes are handmade in Italy by third-generation artisans. You can order them on BalletBeautiful.com and Net-a-Porter. There is truly a craft to making ballet shoes. I love mixing it up and playing with different colors, ribbons, and materials depending on my look and mood!