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Deborah Nelson

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Life as a professional dance costume designer for 40+ years

Posted by Deborah Nelson on Fri, Jul 06, 2018 @ 11:07 AM

If you know me, or my company Satin Stitches Ltd, you are probably aware that I have had a 40 year journey as the founder and head designer of Satin Stitches. I wear many hats for a niche business that has been creating custom-designed dance (and performance) costumes for 40 years. Recently I posted a new ‘Fun Fact’ with an old photo from those 40 years, every day, during my ‘Anniversary Month’.

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Tags: Minnesota Dancer Magazine

What makes an UGLY costume?

Posted by Deborah Nelson on Thu, Jun 28, 2018 @ 16:06 PM

I am generally a very positive person, and I grew up with “If you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything”. I was shy as a child and therefore never had a problem with this!

I have posted many hundreds of blogs where I have critiqued costumes. Costumes from the TV show “Dancing with the Stars”, costumes from many a Red Carpet and costumes from various dance team competitions. I have always tried to stay positive, but sometimes it would be very educational for EVERYONE, if I called attention to an ugly detail on a costume or if an entire costume had no redeeming qualities. I am always striving for more beautiful costumes in the world. The world would be a better place if no one had to wear ugly costumes!

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Tags: Costume Design Tips, Costume Fit & Size Tips

Critiquing my ‘Dancing with the Stars’ Costume Critiques!

Posted by Deborah Nelson on Thu, Jun 07, 2018 @ 13:06 PM

Why do I post my costume critiques from ‘Dancing with the Stars’? Well…I love watching dance performances, especially when the performers are all decked out in fabulous, custom designed costumes! Don’t you?

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Tags: Minnesota Dancer Magazine

DWTS Season 26: Week 4 Costume Critique

Posted by Deborah Nelson on Wed, May 23, 2018 @ 13:05 PM

What a whirlwind ‘Dancing with the Stars’ season!!! Wow – it came and went FAST, didn’t it? To me, the short season was both good and bad…I enjoyed focusing on the contestant costumes, with not many ‘fill in’ troupe routines (even though these segments of the show were enjoyable). Spring has sprung, here in Minnesota, so I won’t need to stay indoors for 2 hours every Monday evening for months on end. (Fresh Minnesota’s spring air is great!) I feel I was able to ‘get to know’ the contestants in these 4 short weeks, but obviously not those that were eliminated early. I did miss seeing more dancing from the non-finalists in the finale!

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Tags: DWTS

DWTS Season 26: Week 3 Costume Critique

Posted by Deborah Nelson on Tue, May 15, 2018 @ 13:05 PM

It was very enjoyable to see the Pros and Troupe present their dance routines on this week’s show. With all the guys in the same exact outfit of matte blue baseball jackets with black accents, worn with black shirts and trousers (with a modest amount of rhinestoning). Basic costumes that could work with most guys. The ladies all wore different glitzy blue costumes which made a pleasing visual picture. The contestants wore glitzy red costumes, including the guest judge. The ‘guest mentors’ wore black. All in all, a very nice visual!

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Tags: DWTS

DWTS Season 26: Week 2 Costume Critique

Posted by Deborah Nelson on Tue, May 08, 2018 @ 16:05 PM

Wow! We are halfway through this mini-season, with a double header this week! The individual dances were captivating and the Team Dances were fun.

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Tags: DWTS

Rhinestoning 102

Posted by Deborah Nelson on Thu, May 03, 2018 @ 13:05 PM

My rhinestone tips blog posted many years ago. “Rhinestoning 101” is still a very comprehensive guide to what you should consider, when considering adding rhinestones to your dance costume. I answer all these questions:

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Tags: Minnesota Dancer Magazine

DWTS Season 26: Week 1 Costume Critique

Posted by Deborah Nelson on Tue, May 01, 2018 @ 15:05 PM

Season 26 “Dancing With the Stars – Athletes”…a shortened season, but with athletes. And after this first show, the figure skaters dominated! (Are we surprised?…Absolutely NOT! Skating is basically dancing on the ice, right?

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Tags: DWTS

All-Star Cheer Studio “Ultimate Uniform Design”

Posted by Deborah Nelson on Tue, Apr 24, 2018 @ 09:04 AM

Every year, for the past several seasons, Satin Stitches has been a part of Inside Cheerleading Magazine’s “Ultimate Uniform Challenge” by providing several uniforms created specifically for the magazine’s pictorial feature. A color combination is decided, and we are given a few weeks to create brand new styles that are cut and sewn in the specified colors. This year a black, white and mint palette was chosen.

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Tags: Inside Cheerleading

Tips for Men’s Ballroom Costumes

Posted by Deborah Nelson on Mon, Apr 02, 2018 @ 12:04 PM

 In ballroom dance, some might think that what the man wears is inconsequential to what the lady is wearing. How do you feel about this statement?

I disagree! Generally, the man’s attire shouldn’t outshine the lady’s apparel, but it should coordinate and sometimes ‘match’. A ballroom couple is a complete entity. The dancers should coordinate their movements, dance styling, and their apparel. As with everything for their performance, they should be looked upon as ‘one’, not as two totally separate individuals.

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Tags: Minnesota Dancer Magazine


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