Introducing our first Fashionable Feiser! I’m so excited to get this section rolling. It’s just a snapshot of real dancers’ fashions from the sidewalk to the World stage. I love seeing what dancers like and what their favorite styles are. If you would like to be a fashionable feiser, send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org! Don’t worry about being the most trendy – it’s all about owning and showcasing your individual style!
For our very first Fashionable Feiser, we have Sara Kubik! A gymnast turned world qualifying Irish dancer, she’s also the author of Rince Go Bragh – a great Irish dance blog focusing on her inspiring journey in Irish dance and other dance related tidbits!
So, without further ado, here’s Sara!
Give us some general background on yourself!
All through my life, I was involved in competitive gymnastics (about 13 years). It was always my dream as a kid to make the Olympic team, but as the years went on, I realized my passion was actually for music and I began to focus more on that my senior year of high school. Now, I am going to graduate from college in December with a degree in vocal music education, and hopefully enter the professional world shortly after that. My dream in life is to teach high school choir, but I’d be cool starting out being an elementary general music teacher. I started dancing in late 2007 when I started college, and hopefully I can continue to do so as I finish my last semester of student teaching and get a big girl job.
What’s your personal style like?
My personal style is a jumble of things: there’s ‘Irish dancer chic,’ casual everyday outfits, and professional wear. My closet really has the gamut, but the things that stays constant in all these styles is that I must be comfortable. If I’m not comfortable, I will probably not leave my house. I own lots of jeans. I like cardigans as well: they can double as professional wear and casual everyday clothing. I also have a weakness for shoes because there are so many different styles, and of course you need a different pair for each outfit!
1. Hollister. I worked there as a model, so I own a lot of plaid, dark skinny jeans, and cardigans and such. Their look can basically define casual everyday outfits.
2. I just got into the imgfave, StumbleUpon, and tumblr websites. I love looking at the pictures of complete outfits people have put together and pulling elements from those outfits that I like and transferring that into my own style. I also pay attention to things in fashion magazines and what the mannequins in the stores are wearing.
Do you have any favorite “real life” style trends right now?
I love ruffles and cardigans! Also lace and sequins. (Not necessarily all combined like I just said though!)
What’s your background in Irish dance? How you got involved, how you’re currently involved, etc.
I was first exposed to Irish dance in sixth grade. On the last day of our dance elective, we watched Lord of the Dance, and I never looked back from that point on. I spent the entire summer after that watching either Riverdance or Lord of the Dance once a day. I wanted to start dancing so badly right then, but I was in the gym working on being competitive for gymnastics at least 20 hours a week. It wasn’t until after high school that I began seriously looking for an Irish dance school near my college, and when I found one that was starting an adult class, you can believe I jumped on that pretty quick. Since then, I’ve moved out of the adult class and onwards and upwards. I started doing feiseanna in 2008, and made it into open championships this past November. I also went to my first world championships this year, so it’s all been one exciting journey so far. I’m hoping to continue and go to my Oireachtas again this December.
What’s your Irish dance style like?
For regular class, I can usually be found in a dance t-shirt, soffe shorts and some poodle socks. I just want to be comfortable when I practice. For feiseanna, I always wear the same thing because it’s my ‘lucky outfit’ so to say: Uggs or adidas flip flops (depends on the season), yoga pants or navy soffe shorts with music notes on them, a yellow workout tank and over that, a baseball shirt my dance school ordered for the last Oireachtas. Again, I just want to be comfortable, especially since I’m either sitting around or wanting to warm up for the competition. For competing, I always have my Irish dancer-sized pouf, my sparkle poodle socks, and my MAC make up. I usually have a full wig, but last feis it was just too darn hot so I tried one of those huge loose curl bun wigs. I’m still not sure about that style choice…
Do you have a solo dress? What’s it like? Is it your dream dress? What would your dream dress look like?
Yes, I do have a solo. It’s got 5 panels, and is navy blue velvet with a lace flower-inspired applique on each panel and around the neck. The sleeves have strings of yellow sequins to create a vertical stripe effect. Of course, it has hundreds of rhinestones. It’s not made by any big-name dressmaker; I found it on dance.net. It was my dream dress at the time because I could afford it. When I started dance, I fell in love with asymmetrical dresses because they were so rare and eye-catching. That sort of style is more reminiscent of the gymnastics leotards I spent so much time around as a teenager. With that in mind, my dream dress would be some sort of asymmetrical, and still in the blue family.
Do you have any favorite Irish dance styles right now? What about designers? Any accessories that you love?
Definitely asymmetrical! I love all the options you have with dress designs, especially with Gavin’s dresses. They’re so breathtaking! My new favorite accessory is colored soft shoes. If I were ever in a position to do a parade of champions, I would for sure go out and buy a pair that matched my dress before dancing!
Does your real life style influence your Irish dance style? How about vice versa?
I think I’d say Irish dance influences my everyday style more so than my everyday influencing my dance style. I’m instantly drawn to anything in stores with sequins or rhinestones. Most of my family and non-dance friends think these sorts of things are gaudy, but I can always find more room in my wardrobe for sparkle! It’s learning to sparkle in moderation that’s the most difficult.
Do you have any last words of advice for a feisonista?
Be yourself, it’s the most comfortable you can be.
Love Sara’s style? Love the same styles she does? Get any inspiration for your own style in real life or Irish dance?
Stay Fashionable, Feisers!