When one of Brighton's belly dance stars Hilde Cannoodt asked me to make her a costume I was very excited.
We took as inspiration Hilde's favourite colour wine, flamenco ruffles and Russian folk filigree jewellery. The costume was to include bra, belt, trousers, skirt and hair accessories and has to be striking, co-ordinated and unconventional.
The belt and bra were made of a thick brocade strong enought to support the heavy coins and beads that would complete the costume.
Taffeta was used for the skirt and ruffles and made a gorgeous sound as it moved.
The embroidery I designed from some Russian filigree jewellery, that I greatly simplified to make it as bold as possible and was done using a hoop, an ordinary satin stitch and a lot of patience. The final touches were coins and jewellery recycled from some of Hilde's old costumes and some bone and metal beads appropriate to the design.
Hilde wearing her finished costume ( photo by Russell Wood)
For information on Hilde's classes and performances