For social classes, casual attire or workout clothes are recommended. For International dance practice on Tuesdays and Thursdays, however, we do have a dress code. (You'll find out why several weeks into classes.)
Guys should wear slacks; if you wear jeans to practice, you might have to dance a solo for us (which may involve dragging your partner out onto the dance floor). Shorts are okay for Latin, but please wear long pants for Standard practice. Also, please remove anything in your pockets before Standard practice, or it will negatively impact your frame. Girls, it is recommended that you wear leggings or skirts to practice - leggings allow you to easily see your frame, and skirts familiarize you with dancing in extra fabric. Everyone, please do not wear baggy shirts or pants. The coaches won't be able to see your body movement as well, and they need to be able to do so to give you the best feedback.
A helpful tip: Put on deodorant and have a mint to ensure dancing is a pleasant experience for everyone.
Sample practice attire
Guys, wear nice black pants and a collared shirt. Wearing a vest and a tie doesn't hurt for Standard. You can take those off and unbutton the top buttons of your shirt for Latin (or switch to a new shirt because you'll probably be sweaty by then). Girls, wear a long skirt (below the knee) for Standard and a short skirt (above the knee) for Latin. Everyone, you want to look nice and dressy for Standard, and you want to be flashy for Latin. Note that guys can get away with dressing all in black for Latin; girls, you want to stand out!
Sample competition attire
Options for ordering online
Capezio (workout clothes, dance shoes)
Dance Dress Pro (costumes)
RAINBOWSHIU: Dance Wear Super Store (costumes)
Tango Rouge Ballroom Dancewear (costumes)
For social classes, socks are recommended for most dances. If you have shoes that won't mark the floor or ballroom shoes, those are fine as well. We don't want to scratch the studio floor, and socks make it easier to do the steps, which often involve tracing the floor.
Shoes are a must for those who want to participate in our International dance classes, but they can be pricey. As a start, girls can dance both Standard and Latin dances with a pair of Latin shoes, and guys can dance both Standard and Latin dances with a pair of Standard shoes. Eventually, many but not all will buy a pair of both types of shoes, but it is not required. You may also want to get a shoe brush, which you can share with someone else. Eventually, girls will also want to buy replacement heel caps, as they do wear out.
When purchasing your first pair of ballroom shoes, you should go into an actual store so that an expert can help you find your shoe size (many are sold in foreign sizes) and differentiate between Latin and Standard shoes. Be sure to specify that you dance International style. Girls, your Standard shoes should not have open sides - that's American style. Guys, your shoes all have similar styles, with the main difference being heel height (Standard has a lower heel than Latin).
Once you know your size, you can order your shoes in different styles online!
Supadance (great quality, though pricey)