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Home: Choirs and Choral Music: General discussion:
Ladies' choir dress
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New User

Aug 12, 2006, 12:57 PM

Post #1 of 4 (41916 views)
Ladies' choir dress Can't Post

Does anyone have any advice about choosing and purchasing blouses or other uniform dress for the female members of a choir? We seem to have interminable arguments over colour and style, and then can't find a suitable supplier.

New User

Sep 2, 2006, 12:18 PM

Post #2 of 4 (41835 views)
Re: [BethB] Ladies' choir dress [In reply to] Can't Post

This is always a vexed question and I sympathise as being the one nominated to sort dress out in our choir. We have a couple of 'outfits' and have chosen the last after asking all choir members to look for a blouse they thought suitable and to possibly bring an example or circulate web page to members. The specification was white long sleeved, made to be worn outside the skirt, suited a range of ages and was available in sizes 10-18/20. We had lots of arguments previously about whether blouses should be tucked in or left out as different shapes suit different styles. We didn't have many to choose from as you may imagine but we decided on a a Marks & Spencer one in the end by voting and general agreement. Each lady bought her own and the choir bought some extra's for potential new members etc. I bought extra's in sizes 14, 16 and 18, it is a stretch material blouse and is shaped a little. We have used this blouse successfully for the last 2 years. We have 2 sets of scarves with music notes on (red and black) and use these to ring the changes. We also had a set of waistcoats made about 4 years ago for both men and women and we wear the same blouse under it. Our choir has been going for around 30 years and I believe have had lots of different blouses and arguments!

We did want a coloured blouse but it just got silly with people saying that such and such a colour didn't suit them etc so in the end we went for good old white. We try not to make it too expensive and the choir have bought the sets of scarves. In the end a concensus has to be reached especially if members are paying for the blouses themselves.

If it helps we have decided that for formal concerts we always wear long black skirts and for informal concerts we wear either long skirts or dressy trousers. This seems to suit everyone and presents a reasonable uniform look as peoples eyes are drawn to the scarves.

Hope this is of some help.

New User

Sep 4, 2006, 9:37 PM

Post #3 of 4 (41814 views)
Re: [Jen] Ladies' choir dress [In reply to] Can't Post

Thanks for your suggestions, Jen. We've thought about the white blouse with scarf option, and we may still go down that route. In the meantime, we have come across a firm in Glasgow who make blouses for choirs, and we have been in touch with a choir near us who have used this firm. They are very happy with their blouses ( a very bright red, which I think our members would find a bit alarming!) - they fit well, are quite flattering, and very comfortable to wear. I and my fellow committee members are going to recommend that we buy something similar (V-neck, 3/4 sleeves, slightly fitted and designed to be worn outside the skirt). We plan to give them a choice over the colour, but only by giving them a choice of 3, otherwise we'll never get a decision. When we had this discussion previously, we even had people who said white doesn't suit them!

If anyone wants to know how to contact the blouse makers, they are called Park Davidson and they have a website.

Lee Robinson

Sep 20, 2006, 7:36 PM

Post #4 of 4 (41675 views)
Re: [BethB] Ladies' choir dress [In reply to] Can't Post

Briefly, I sing in a mixed-voice vocal harmony group -- and we concentrate on jazz standards and the like.

We too have had endless bouts trying to find outfits all the women looked good in and liked. And this is our formula for our first half of show 'costume': we wear our own 'jewel' coloured silk shirts (in the red-blue range of colourways, which includes pinks, turquoises, navys, purples, plums, etc) over smart black trousers. The men wear similarly toned silk ties, though because we do popular music, they wear black shirts as well (a kind of Guys & Dolls look).

This works well on stage and is much more interesting than black and white!

Evidently it's is a common solution for moving beyond a strict uniform Ð yet keeping things toned-in and unified. You could do the same thing using coloured waistcoats.

Good luck,

Lee (Take Twenty singers, North London)

(This post was edited by Lee Robinson on Oct 3, 2006, 11:34 AM)


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