Whether it was the perfectly oversized gray sweatshirt of Jennifer Beals in Flashdance, Mikhail Baryshnikov in pirouette-ready skinny jeans in White Nights, the crisp knotted oxford and leg-skimming denim shorts of Dirty Dancing’s Jennifer Grey, there has always been a certain sartorial allure to dancers’ off-duty style, that haphazardly cool way of mixing the pieces they wear at the barre to those they wear on the street. And with plenty of pro dancers plugging into social media these days, it would seem the fascination only grows larger. Take San Francisco Ballet principal Maria Kochetkova’s Instagram feed, where the Russian-born pro’s personal style often takes center stage, via snapshots of herself with Gosha Rubchinskiy sweatshirts thrown over her tights.
The same could be said for her contemporary Misty Copeland: Who can forget the history-making ballerina spinning herself through Under Armour’s enticing campaign in an athleisure-inspired sports bra and pair of barely-there shorts? The look was a modern expansion on the leotard and tutu—an interpretation that designers have been playing mercilessly with. The recent influx of everything from bodysuits on the runways to Miu Miu’s lace-up slippers marks a turning point for dancewear in fashion. And although we may not be able to pull off a grand jeté, we can certainly take a leap in that general direction with, say, an Alix velvet bodysuit tucked into a Ballet Beautiful satin-trimmed chiffon wrap skirt. Needle & Thread’s diaphanous ballet dress paired with Miu Miu’s suede ballerinas will send us flying, while Lisa Marie Fernandez’s sleeveless unitard and Manolo Blahnik suede ballerina mules always keeps us on point.
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