Indiegogo: Yehoodi Live Stream From ILHC

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

Let's do 2013 even better!
Let’s do 2013 even better!

Last year was the first year that Yehoodi live broadcasted all of the competitions at the International Lindy Hop Championships. The broadcast garnered over 23,000 views and had an international audience. This is no small feat! I had the pleasure of being a part of this landmark broadcast as a commentator during the Open Balboa competition and marveled at how dedicated the Yehoodi staff was to putting out a quality broadcast in spite of their small crew and minimal equipment. It was a lot of work, for sure, and I am excited to report that they are planning on doing it again this year.

But they need a little help to do it right. From their Indiegogo page:

“For 15 years, Yehoodi.com has been providing, free of charge, an online home for the lindy hop community. We’ve run discussion forums, live events like the Basie Centennial, streaming online swing radio, and audio/video podcasts like the Yehoodi Talk Show, Hey Mr. Jesse and SwingNation.

In all of that time, we have never asked for a dime from our members and viewers. Today is the first time on all those years we are asking the lindy hop community for support.

ILHC logoLast year, we went to the International Lindy Hop Championships in Washington DC and produced our first live on-site dance competition show. Using basic production equipment and a skeleton crew, we were able to put on a high quality production that had 23,000+ views over the weekend, with viewers logging in from Korea, Sweden, Australia and many more countries. We heard from hundreds of you how much you enjoyed the live broadcast and the video archive later.

This year, we think we can do even better. We have an opportunity to create a television-quality, high definition video production from ILHC. But we need your help.

images

Here’s what we need:

– bad ass equipment

– a killer production team…

(insert description of bad ass equipment and killer production team)”

FURTHER:

If I'm not attending this I want to be watching this!
If I’m not attending this I want to be watching this!

“We have already been approached by several event organizers to stream their competitions and showcases live to the internet. In particular, the team behind the Frankie100 Centennial Celebration have said that they would love for Yehoodi to be there in May of 2014 to stream some of that historic event to the world. With your support, that can happen.

Also, if we reach our goal, we will be able to provide the lindy community with a much higher quality version of our weekly lindy hop based show, SwingNation, the only weekly live streamed video podcast that delivers news, events, interviews and featured dance videos for our Lindy Hop audience. The SwingNation show archive will be in the best quality possible for future generations to come.”

MORE BROADCASTS. We will be in a whole other realm of hobby at this point, with potential for a broader international reach, not to mention the ability to bring the events to people who aren’t able to attend them, to see MORE AWESOME DANCING.

I am super excited about the prospects. As with any worthwhile endeavor, it takes blood, sweat, tears, and cash to make things run. Drop a few dollars their way, this is definitely one project that we can continue to benefit from well into the future. Click here to invest in your Lindy Hop future. πŸ™‚

What’s Old is New: Groovie Movie

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

GroovieMovieCast

I’ve been meaning to seek out the items for this post for a couple of years and Memorial Day seems like a good time to share – following my last What’s Old is New featuring outfits from A Day at the Races, I’d like to look at some of the costuming choices in Groovie Movie and note where you may find similar items in modern times to hone your 1940’s-inspired dance pieces. As this was a film made during World War II and the film features some the male dancers at the end wearing military uniforms, this appears to an excellent film to highlight, in the spirit of Memorial Day. Jitterbugs, veterans, and those who served our nation with honor – we salute you!

I’m going to focus on some of the followers’ outfits at the end of the film because some of the earlier outfits were more…to prove a point or to further the narrative. πŸ™‚ For military garb, that’s a bit of a can of worms. Visit your local army/navy surplus for inspiration, talk to your grandpa, or delve into the potentially very expensive (and very specific) hobby of collecting vintage uniforms.

Onward, ladies!

Jitterbuggin has a great jumper/pinafore that's similar to the one Irene Thomas is wearing in the clip.
Jitterbuggin has a great jumper/pinafore that’s similar to the one Irene Thomas is wearing in the clip.
A jumper similar to the one worn by Kay Vaughn (Smith) in the clip, courtesy of Time Machine Vintage on Etsy - adorbs!
A jumper similar to the one worn by Kay Vaughn (Smith) in the clip, courtesy of Time Machine Vintage on Etsy – adorbs!
Jitterbuggin has Irene's number - this blouse style is so close.  The cat print is great, but you could probably convince Kim to make you a white one to complete your Groovie Movie look. :)
Jitterbuggin has Irene’s number – this blouse style is so close. The cat print is great, but you could probably convince Kim to make you a white one to complete your Groovie Movie look. πŸ™‚
And it looks like Time Machine Vintage has Kay's number - Kay's shirt is a little harder to discern, but it looks like a button-down with some sort of tie at the neck.  Request in white sans lace for your Groovie Movie homage.
And it looks like Time Machine Vintage has Kay’s number – Kay’s shirt is a little harder to discern, but it looks like a button-down with some sort of tie at the neck. Request in white sans lace for your Groovie Movie homage.
This bow looks like it's about the right size. :)  Courtesy of Whispy Love on Etsy.
This bow looks like it’s about the right size. πŸ™‚ Courtesy of Whispy Love on Etsy.
Jean Veloz's fitted V-neck shirt with ruching on the front is the most difficult - I still can't find a good reproduction, or even a pattern I feel comfortable identifying as "close."  In terms of closeness, this pattern is about as close as I could get.  Find a seamstress friend or Etsy seller for hire and get to work.
Jean Veloz’s fitted V-neck shirt with ruching on the front is the most difficult – I still can’t find a good reproduction, or even a pattern I feel comfortable identifying as “close.” In terms of closeness, this pattern is about as close as I could get. Find a seamstress friend or Etsy seller for hire and get to work.
I've looked at the blurry image of Jean's brooch on her blouse long enough that I'm fairly certain it's a flower (though witch on a broomstick was a close second) - search eBay for "1940 flower brooch" and the options are plentiful!
I’ve looked at the blurry image of Jean’s brooch on her blouse long enough that I’m fairly certain it’s a flower (though witch on a broomstick was a close second) – search eBay for “1940 flower brooch” and the options are plentiful!
Trashy Diva's gathered mini skirt looks like the junior version of their high waisted 1940's skirt - perfect for the Groovie Movie look, as Jean's skirt was definitely above the knee.  Available in teal, purple, green, red, and black
Trashy Diva’s gathered mini skirt looks like the junior version of their high waisted 1940’s skirt – perfect for the Groovie Movie look, as Jean’s skirt was definitely above the knee. Available in teal, purple, green, red, and black
Wedges for everyone!  Get yours before Dancestore.com discontinues them - available in the sale section, in black and brown.
Wedges for everyone! Get yours before Dancestore.com discontinues them – available in the sale section, in black and brown.
I couldn't find ankle tie wedges, so these ankle straps will have to do - from Cruisin Australia.
I couldn’t find ankle tie wedges, so these ankle straps will have to do – from Cruisin Australia.

Where Are The Trumpet Skirts?

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

Bonnie Parker wants to know where the hell her trumpet skirts are, it's time for a new one.
Bonnie Parker wants to know where the hell her trumpet skirts are – she’s long overdue for a new one.

It’s been over a year since my Ode to a Trumpet Skirt, the subsequent crusade, and Dancestore.com‘s response that, yes, we should bring this product back because there is a demand for it. Given the manufacturing process and understanding that these things take time, I figured I’d check back in on Facebook and see how things were going.

Lindy Shopper: Still waiting on that trumpet skirt…

Dancestore.com: Hi Laura! Are you waiting on an order to arrive?

Lindy Shopper: *bangs head against wall*

Lindy Shopper: (actual response) Waiting on fulfillment of this promise: https://lindyshopper.com/2012/04/24/the-holy-grail/

I’m not sure what else we can do, ladies – over a hundred of you personally posted on Dancestore.com’s wall saying “YES! We would buy this skirt” even “instantly” and, in some cases, “in every color!” I guess it’s time to start looking for another source. I have a lead on something, which I hope to write about very soon after a purchase and a test run…we shall see.

The Original Inspiration and the Reproduction

The reproduction
The reproduction

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

I often wonder what inspired certain reproduction dresses – shapes and motifs are obvious, but what about the specifics? I love finding those rare inspiration pieces and found what I believe to be Trashy Diva’s inspiration for their fall collection Lilian Dress (which I immediately began panting over upon seeing it) – this wonderful 1940’s dress on eBay. The embroidery is spot on. While the dress has undergone some Trashy Diva modifications, I think they made some great choices like moving the embroidery closer to the shoulder, changing the embroidery colors to more peacock blues and greens, losing the hip seaming/detail, and giving it an overall sleeker, more Asian-inspired silhouette. The charm is not lost, though, as the embroidery in the original is just as magnificent as the repro, and that little row of buttons is divine on both.

The original inspiration?  What say you, Trashy Diva?
The original inspiration? What say you, Trashy Diva?

Corn Applique Dress

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

1026_43_1

That’s right, I said corn – I found this great 1940’s sequin applique dress, but instead of the typical bows or flowers, this one features what could either be corn or yellow grapes. For our purposes, I’m going with corn and this is the sparkly equivalent of a novelty print. If I were heading to the Hawkeye Swing Festival or the Heartland Swing Festival, I would pick this up in a second. Adorable!

M.G. Baker Co. Bow Ties

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

Red Tartan - can't post of Christmas Day without a Christmas tie!
Red Tartan – can’t post on Christmas Day without a Christmas tie!

Thanks to a tip from North Vancouver dancer Sarah Vincent, I am now apprised of the existence of M.G. Baker Co. Bow Ties, handmade in the U.S.A. and christened with names like Foxtrot, Lindy Hop, Bunny Hop, Charleston, Boogie, and other vintage dances. The funny thing is, this guy is not a dancer…which means he must be very clever to know the names of all of these dances. πŸ™‚

These ties are 100% cotton, which means they are friendly for the inevitable sweat that accompanies your dancing. It also means you could probably throw it in the wash (but air dry, lest your tie shrink to mini-tie).

From the website: “All M.G. BAKER CO. Bow Ties are the traditional “Self-Tie” variety; meaning they are the kind you tie yourself. But don’t fret! Each and every one is uniquely packaged in a keepsake box complete with illustrated tying instructions to help teach even the most inexperienced beginner how to tie a bow tie to perfection.”

Faves:

Charleston
Charleston
Polka
Polka

1861968_grande

6561787_grande

Tightsplease

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

0-2879--BasicTP-size-300x400

Fancy legwear has definitely been a trend in the Lindy Hop community for the past few years and it makes sense – we are paying a lot of attention to movement and embellishing that is one way to get someone to look at your legs. I was contacted by the UK legwear retailer, Tightsplease, about reviewing their site and product and I am happy to report that all is well in the UK for quality hosiery.

I tried a pair of the Tightsplease brand’s Jive Stockings, which proved to be highly durable. I didn’t dance in them, but I did brave a Christmas party with a shooting contest, a parade, hot glue gun crafts, small children, and runway walking on a gravel driveway. They’ve made it through the wash on the delicate cycle and are ready to go again. This is saying a lot for these hose because I am the destroyer of all panty hose that are not, essentially, medical grade support hose. I destroyed a different pair last night on the first wear by simply attending a concert and sitting in a chair for 2 hours. Riddle me that.

0-3182--BasicTP-size-300x400

I was very excited to see that they carry what they are calling Charleston stockings, which look like the silk stockings of old, but probably aren’t silk, based on the price tag. I am hopeful for the latter because silk stockings tend to get droopy around the ankles mid-way through the night and I’d love for modern technology to have improved on that, but maintain that same rich, silky look. Ella wasn’t kidding when she sang about silk shiny stockings – they are really shiny!

The website also lists the denier for most of the hosiery, which I find extremely helpful as the hosiery Godzilla. If there’s two pairs that look the same, you can be sure I’ll go for the one with the higher denier number.

Here are some of my favorites from this lovely site:

Side bow suspender tights - sassy without the garter belt
Side bow suspender tights – sassy without the garter belt
Chicago tights - more shiny stuff!
Chicago tights – more shiny stuff!
Freakin' gorgeous hold ups with peacock feather detail
Freakin’ gorgeous hold ups with peacock feather detail
80 denier tights in 7 colors - hoping 80 denier means Godzilla-proof...
80 denier tights in 7 colors – hoping 80 denier means Godzilla-proof…
Dogstooth tights
Dogstooth tights

Discussion on Men’s Swing Dance Shoes

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

I am often curious about men’s footwear, specifically for Lindy Hop and Balboa. You see everything from sneakers to wingtips, but the options for shoes made specifically for dancing are drastically more limited than women’s options. My friend Matt Mitchell from Austin, Texas posed this question on Facebook: “Looking to retire the Aris Allens. What shoes would you recommend? Nick, David, Jeremy, Mickey, and any other lead?” I’d like to know the answer to this myself!

Pronto Uomo Brown Center-Seam Dress Shoe | Men's Wearhouse

Jon Tigert chimed in first with his endorsement for Pronto Uomo brown leather oxfords, adding that “they are mostly a clothes company, but the shoes hold up great and are super comfortable.” A quick search of the internets revealed very little in the way of offerings for purchase, but if you are looking for tuxedo shoes for this year’s Lindy Focus, their patent leather tuxedo shoes are available at Men’s Wearhouse. A search of eBay shows that there are a lot of these shoes being sold used, which translates into savings for you.

img-thing

Nick Williams‘ shoe of choice has been discontinued, Nordstrom brand loafers, but Jeremy Otth posted a link to a pair of loafers from Nordstrom that could fit the bill. Nick says that this particular loafer is different in terms of design, so his search for a new favorite dance shoe continues. David Lee adds that he is wearing the new Nordstrom loafers, which were a little hard on his feet until he bought inserts, and they are now great.

354X490TMPL

Andreas Olsson favors these sweet Moreschi Italian loafers, acknowledging that they are pricey, but that they are very comfortable and extremely durable. He’s still wearing the pair he bought in 2006.

In terms of general brand recommendations, Carl Nelson recommends Florsheim because they fit his feet well. Jason Swihart* perfers Allen Edmonds, but adds that “any quality men’s shoes with a flexible, not-too-heavy leather sole (if the heel is rubber, you can have it replaced)” is good. Jeremy says that Stacy Adams shoes are good if you like a thicker sole, but he prefers the Nordstrom loafer so he can “feel the floor.”

Other general tips:

– Buy shoes that fit your feet.
– Shoe trees and leather treatment can help make shoes fit you better.
– Vintage shoes are a viable option, especially if you have narrow feet.
– If you find a pair of shoes you like and they aren’t leather on the bottom or on the heel, you can always find a cobbler and have them soled in leather or suede.

I found this discussion very useful and broadening in terms of knowning what options are available to men. It appears that classic men’s shoe makers/retailers are the most viable options outside of the Aris Allen brand. Thanks to all who participated in this conversation for your feedback and the results of your trials and errors.

* Mr. Swihart appears on the Lindy Shopper blog with the permission of his legal counsel.

Korea Balboa Weekend Shoes

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

Like all great Balboa events, it appears that Korea Balboa Weekend has a dance shoe vendor, Balboa Sin, with the added bonus that you can order these shoes from their event website. I’d love to hear from some of the Korean dancers how they like the shoes. It looks like you can custom order your heel height, which is my favorite customization, since I like my heels in the 2 inch range. I am pretty much in love with all of the offerings on the website, but here are some of my super faves:

Red Mary Janes!
Green suede t-straps *drool*
Love this cheerful blue – similar to Remix’s Emily blue, but in a different style
These glorious t-straps get their own photo spread

Mint Julep Jazz Band Kickstarter

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

While I have your attention with yesterday’s post, I’ll make a shameless plug for my band, the Mint Julep Jazz Band, and the Kickstarter we are running through December 30 to fund our first CD! We’d love to have you as a backer in exchange for copies of the CD, dance shoe bags, and other fabulous rewards, but the best reason of of all – we make music you can swing out to!

You can get more information about the band in general at our website, or visit Swing DJ Resources for a post about the band, its relationship to the swing dance community, and the Kickstarter campaign.

We would also encourage you to talk to Kate Hedin, David Rehm, Chad Skeeters, Abigail Browning, Chelsea Lee, Breanna Perry, Corey Manke, Shana Worel, and Rob Moreland about why they backed our Kickstarter and ask anyone who attended EBC this year what they thought of the Friday night band. This disc is gonna swing, I promise! πŸ˜€

Body Odor at Dance Events

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

I am sad to report this, but the biggest offense at this year’s Eastern Balboa Championships was body odor. Numerous people made unsolicited comments about the ripe smell of mostly gentlemen, but also some ladies, who were taking classes (with the exception of the Masters class, but by then you have probably mastered many things, including your body odor at dance events).

This can be a very sensitive topic for people, but it doesn’t have to be. It’s important to be aware of your smell at dances because it can make for an unpleasant experience for others around you and, in turn, can make for an unpleasant night of dancing for you when others react or pretend not to react to your smell.

This all has little to do with shopping, but there are some things you can do, things that you can purchase, and things that you can wear that can make a difference in your odor throughout the night. We are all sweating out there on the dance floor, it’s inevitable that the room we dance in will end up smelling like a locker room when we are done; however, it’s when your personal smell overpowers the general musk of the room that there is a need to address the issue.

It is important to take both preventative and continuing measures to ensure that you remain a viable partner throughout the dance or dance event.

Ask yourself, do I smell?

As soon as I smell something I immediately assume it’s me. I’m the closest person to me, shouldn’t I be able to smell myself? Do an armpit check. DO IT. I have, on occasion, forgotten to wear deodorant. It happens. I always keep deodorant in my purse, so I run to the bathroom and apply/reapply liberally. I also sometimes ask a close friend to tell me if I smell. He/she will be honest about your odor because this is an important question.

This cat is making stink face because he senses your odor from across the dance floor.

Bathe

Yes, showering takes time away from workshops/hanging out/meals/dances/late night, but if you have sweated and are sitting in that sweat for a period of 24 hours at an event, chances are you probably smell a little. It’s natural. This is where you consider that others around you may not want to smell you. If you are at home with your BFF playing video games and eating Cheetos all weekend, you probably don’t have to bathe, but then that friend probably isn’t touching you or getting in your personal space. You are dancing with friends and strangers at an event in very close proximity, especially at Balboa events. Please be considerate, take a moment to check your funk level (sniff or ask a friend), and do try to take a bath at least once per 24 hour period. Even a bird bath can help.

Deodorant is your friend

Please wear deodorant. Reapply if necessary.

Change shirts/clothes

If you have worn the same pair of pants all weekend, that may be the source of the smell. Most dancers who have been doing this for a while know that they will need to bring at least one outfit per day, if not more, and most leads know that they will need several changes of shirts throughout the dance. It’s not just about the dampness, it’s also about the smell. You may also want to consider a bird bath for the armpits (and dry them afterwards) with paper towels in the bathroom between shirt changes to wipe away the bacteria, and/or perhaps check at that point to see if you should reapply deodorant.

Diet

You are what you eat and you may smell like what you ate for dinner – try to eat more fruits and veggies and try to eat less meats and greasy food. Avoid onions and garlic – they can affect your breath and your odor, a double whammy. Also, stay hydrated!

Perfumes

This goes to the other end of the spectrum – the overpowering smells aren’t always body odor, so please be mindful of how potent your perfume is at dance events. Most of the female complaints I heard at EBC were perfume-related. If you are using bath products that smell nice and are using deodorant, this is probably enough smelly goodness that you won’t need a perfume. If you are trying to mask the odor, perhaps it’s time to reapply the deo or take a bath.

Clothing Choices

Wear clothing that allows your skin to breathe, i.e. natural fibers (cotton, linen, silk, wool – yes, wool).

While I am certain this is not a comprehensive list, I am hopeful that it is a start – let’s do try to make an effort to keep our personal odor to a minimal level so that we can all enjoy the dance.

Cabiria: Vintage Style in Sizes 12-24

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

Flaminia dress in a cherry print

I can thank milliner Joei Reed for directing me to this gem – Cabiria‘s tagline is “whimsical, sensual style in sizes 12-24,” but I think the word vintage should be thrown in there because so many of these designs take inspiration from 1940’s and 1950’s styles.

This brand is brand spanking new – according to their website, the line launched on October 22, 2012, with an e-store for presales and wholesale and their lookbook, which is a part of their fundraising through Kickstarter. That’s right, this company is still in its infancy and, with your support, these dresses could make their way to you faster and possibly at retail locations and boutiques if the company’s Kickstarter is successful – it looks like they are really close! Here’s the skinny from the Kickstarter campaign:

“The $8,000 is to pay for grading (sizing up and down) costs for each pattern, factory production fees (higher here in the US than abroad, but so important to keep skilled jobs local), shipping costs, website development, and marketing to let the buyers know about our SS13 line. Part of this is to produce the garments to place in independent plus size and boutiques and online retailers, and part will be to produce additional stock for our own e-store direct to the customer.”

Here’s what I’m loving (available for pre-order) from their Spring/Summer 2013 line – silk blends, cotton blends, prints – YESPLS:

*Note that there are additional fabrics/swatches available for each dress.

Francesca dress in a feather print
Flaminia dress in a tropical print
Anna shirtdress in robin’s egg blue print
Guiseppina dress in a butterfly print