If you are new to belly dance you may be asking ‘What is a bellydance costume cover-up and why do I need one?’ Read on, young Padawan…
What Is A Bellydance Costume Cover-up?
A bellydance costume cover-up can be anything from a large rectangle of fabric to a formal coat or overdress. In traditional Raqs Sharqi forms of bellydance ethnic garments like an abaya, thobe or kaftan are often used. There are lots of ways to creatively make your own cover-up. You can dress up a flowy bath robe (not the fuzzy fleecy type, though that would be entertaining!) with trim or find an interesting full or 3/4 length coat and ornament it. Quite often a dance veil is turned into a cover-up. Typically, your troupe director, teacher or the event promoter will let you know if they have specific requirements for type of cover-up they expect you to have.
Why Do We Use Cover-Ups In Bellydance?
Respect For Other Performers:
Often bellydancers are performing in group stage shows or public festivals where there may be many performers performing throughout the event. During these events, where dancers may come and go freely or choose to sit in the audience and watch other performers, it is always best to have a cover-up on. It is disrespectful to the performer on stage and distracting to the audience to have a fully costumed dancer mingling with the public.
Keep The Mystery:
You want to create a moment of magic as you enter the stage for the first time adorned in all your finery. The crowd should say “Oooo!” and “Ahhh!” when you come on stage and not “There’s that dancer with the green (or whatever color) costume we saw earlier.”
Privacy & Sophistication:
When we are on stage we are performers and personas. When we are off stage we may also still be in that role, but, to a different capacity. Wearing a cover-up allows the audience to focus on us as humans. They can see that we are transitioning and no longer in the same performing role. We give off an air of dignity in cover-ups. As I once overheard: “Without a cover-up after a show, I feel more like a trick or treater walking around, and not a legitimate sophisticated bellydance performer”.
How To Create A Quick Bellydance Costume Cover-Up With A Bandhini Wrap:
With nearly 80″ in length, bandhini wraps offer a quick costuming and midriff covering option before and after shows or between sets. They look glamorous enough to pair with your makeup & hair garden, but, understated and modest enough to provide you with the perfect costuming coverup.
That’s it! Super easy, eh?
I hope you found this basic bellydance cover-up info helpful! If you have any additional tips or suggestions feel free to leave them in the comment section below.