Ever since I started writing the blog I have been thinking back to how this “love for retail” all began, and this past week while visiting my hometown in New York a light bulb went off. You see, the one thing we haven’t touched on yet is my other love- which is dance. And being back home made me realize that the first shop I ever really wanted to work in, live in, purchase from, etc. was Applause Dancewear on Long Island. It’s where I went on a monthly basis to get my tights, shoes, leotards, leg warmers, key chains, and t-shirts. Anything that said I love dance, dance teacher, or seemed somewhat inspiring to me was purchased. It’s one of the reasons I would dream of owning my own dance store + studio, and I will be honest- that dream still somewhat exists.
So why am I sharing this with you today?
Well two reasons… First, being a dance teacher was one of the greatest accomplishments of my life- and I believe it’s what started me down the path of mentoring and coaching. Secondly, I am still inspired (and will probably always be inspired) by the dance world- the routines, the instructors, the products, the marketing, the photography- and so I figured this would be a great time to introduce you to some of my favorite brands. And yes, as you know, I am old-school. So the companies I follow on social media and always look out for are the ones I lived in for 20 years. Let's get to it...
Below is a quick list of products (with links) that were my go-to then, and would be my go-to now. This is not an advertisement and I do not get paid if you purchase anything from these retailers. I am nothing but a fan. A fan who happens to be aware of the quality you not only need, but will receive from the brands listed below.
Also, if you think I missed anything after scrolling through, please let me know. I love discovering new retailers and your feedback is definitely welcomed…
As for Pointe Shoes, I used Sansha as a teenager (pictured above), but it's the hardest shoe to suggest to all of you. Each manufacturer fits slightly differently, and it's important to try various brands before purchasing. Sansha happened to mold to my feet perfectly and felt more comfortable compared to others.
Lastly- to all of the mom’s and dad’s out there currently driving your children to dance classes, buying the shoes, standing on line for recital tickets, and putting Broadway shows on your credit cards- know that it is all WORTH IT. My parents did it and I couldn’t be more grateful.
And to Applause Dancewear, Bloch, Capezio, Danskin, and Sansha- I wish you nothing but the best. Here's to ten years from now when I finally open my own dance shop and call you for advice and wholesale orders...
1. Merchant Inspired, LLC