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Posted by Deborah Nelson on Tue, Nov 17, 2015 @ 12:11 PM

I’m hoping none of you were surprised that no one went home this week, on ‘Dancing with the Stars’, right? My heart goes out to Tamar for her scary health revelation, and to Val, who looked so lonely on the DWTS stage. I, for one, will miss Tamar’s exuberant performances.

But the Semi-Finals were exciting, nonetheless! Except for a few miss-steps, all of the dance performances were excellent, and very fun to watch. Bindi and Derek started off the show with their Salsa in hot pink and lots of crystal rhinestones. It was good to see Derek in glitzy, bubblegum pink. The several layers of chainette fringe on Bindi’s costume were positioned to flatter her physique with their extreme diagonal lines creating an extreme basque waistline. The costume designers kept her modest with her fully covered midriff, strapped neckline and a really cute 3-D flower accenting that neckline.

Alek and Lindsay performed a very elegant Waltz, with Alek in a finely tailored, deep blue, shiny suit and Lindsay in a virginal white semi-sheer, double-georgette gown with bedazzled, modest lace, cap sleeved bodice with sheer midriff. Her asymmetrical, horse-hair edged layered skirt was sweet and fresh. I loved this couple’s look!

Carlos and Witney danced a unique Contemporary routine, with Carlos sans-a-shirt and wearing the requisite loose, drawstring black pants. Witney did NOT wear the requisite white lingerie-slip dress, however, but wore a very naked, nude unitard with blue leaf-like appliqués ‘here and there’, with additional scattered rhinestoning. It was a little too naked-looking for my taste, and it made me nervous, so I didn’t really enjoy their costumes.

Nick and Sharna danced a titillating Tango and I LOVED their costuming! Nick wore a custom black jacket with leather-looking lapels and a ‘texture-blocked’ (not color blocked) design that was elegant and a little ‘edgy’. This design was repeated (to my delight) in a later costume during the night. Sharna’s eggplant chiffon, gored skirt over a lingerie-inspired bodysuit was exquisite. It was unusual, with interesting lace and strapping details, and yet, very sophisticated. This was my favorite couple-costume of the night.

For the Dance-Off Round, couples danced the same dance, to the same music, but at separate times. We all saw that Alek and Lindsay’s Cha Cha wasn’t nearly as ‘on pointe’ as Carlos and Witney’s Cha Cha. What I enjoyed most, was the recycling of their costumes from previous performances and especially that my comments about the weird (seemingly) collarless shirt worn by Alek mysteriously turned into a real shirt this week. Did YOU notice? I enjoyed both sets of costumes this week, as much as I enjoyed them during their previous performances. And yes, I LOVE orange and pink together!

I didn’t necessarily recall Bindi and Derek’s Samba costumes, but I do recall Nick’s blue rhinestoned jacket, so I suspect all these costumes could have been recycled as well. Perhaps I wasn’t impressed or repulsed by the other three costumes to remember them! I do recall really liking Nick’s blue jacket, specifically because I liked that it was collarless and had cascading rhinestones from his shoulders, which became sparser as they went farther down the garment. Sharna’s deep blue, fringed leotard had a full mesh bodice, accented with silver shoulder detailing.  Bindi’s silver fringed costume was modest and cute, but pretty forgettable with Derek in all black.

For the Trio Round, Bindi, Derek and Mark performed a professional quality (as noted by the judges) Jazz routine with minimal costuming – very suitable for their choreography. The only costuming, interesting detail was Bindi’s open back with lots of strapping.

Alek performed every man’s dream: Argentine Tango with Lindsay and Emma. Alex was oh, so dapper and manly, in his double-breasted vest, black pant and burgundy shirt. His partners did not look as classy as they could have, with nude-looking sides on their matching (in design) costumes, with one in black and the other in burgundy, lace appliques cascading down their mirror image, costumes. Maybe I was a titch jealous, but I didn’t care for their costumes – they were not elegant and sophisticated.

Neither were Carlos’ costumes with partners Witney and Karina for their Charleston. But I truly enjoyed their costumes because they were not supposed to look elegant and sophisticated, but were to invoke the fun and frivolity of the Charleston’s 1920’s era, which they did. I enjoyed the tailed vests with real straps (although oddly different for no apparent reason) and bow ties, with ‘zoot-suit’-like satin trousers for Carlos. Blue satin costumes never looked so classy!

Oh, but then the best trio was saved for last, at least in the costume category! I LOVED Nick’s Salsa with Sharna and Peta! Nick’s shiny black suit was accented with black velvet lapels, side stripes and lower ‘texture-blocking’ – and oh, so elegant! His partners’ coordinating mesh and ruffled organza butt-ruffled costumes were lovely, with lots and lots of rhinestoning!

So who will win the Mirror Ball Trophy? Only after next week’s competition, will we know!

Tags: Past Seasons DWTS Costume Critiques


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