7 Ways to Make Your Wedding Dance Look its Best: Tips from a DancerDec 10, 2021
7 Tips to make your First Dance look its absolute best.
Everyone wants their wedding dance to be beautiful and memorable, these are extremely simple, easy tips that can make an ENORMOUS difference with how comfortable your dance is and how beautiful it looks. 💕 These are tips we've picked up over more than a decade of sending couples off to their receptions! Without further ado:
Find out your floor size before the wedding
Try to find out the general size of your floor a few weeks before your wedding, there's no reason a big, sweeping dance should look jammed into the corners because your floor was smaller than expected! Knowing the size of your floor ahead of time can help keep you from being surprised on the day-of and feeling flustered. Pro tip: find an area of similar size or mark one out just to get an idea of how much space you have to work with.
Practice a few times in your shoes!
So usually I recommend you both practicing in socks but as your day gets closer I strongly recommend you both slip on those wedding shoes and kick it a bit! Much better to find out now if your wedding shoes are going to be a problem or not. If they do end up being problematic you can alter them or just go with a beautiful pair of slippers/boots/bare toes for your dance! Your style, your wedding!
Talk to your DJ ahead of time
Talk to your DJ! I cannot stress this one enough! Many a time we've had couples in our studio who develop beautiful dances, with musicality matched to their song and their DJ inadvertently messes up so much of their plans. It's not their fault necessarily, a DJ is there to make your reception fun, they want to keep things moving and let's face it, the typical swaying for a four minute song only has appeal for so long. To shorten the experience DJ's will often start your song, while they announce you (to burn part of the run-time) then often fade it out way before the end. This is generally a good thing, unless of course you've planned a dance for your song in a certain way. In that case make sure your DJ has crystal clear instruction on what version of the song you want and what timestamps you want to use (if any) or how long you want it to run. Remember unless you tell them, they have no idea what your plans are.
If you have access to your reception the night before, try running through your dance once or twice on the floor.
There are two reasons for this, one is that we develop visual cues (try learning something one direction over and over, then try to face another direction and do the same thing, tricky isn't it?!). Doing your dance in the environment of your reception can enormously help settle it in your mind and when you do it on your big day, you've got this. Secondly, floors at different venues may differ greatly from the floor you're using at home to practice, being prepared for a floor slightly slippery-er or stickier than you're used to eliminates one more element of surprise.
Consider which direction you're facing.
One small change that can make a huge impact is considering which direction you are facing throughout the dance. The best view of a first dance is generally either profile view or the bride's back (let's face it guys, your backside right now is probably a Great Wall of tuxedo). If she's doing beautiful turns and spins but your broad shoulders are blocking the view then your guests don't get to see the great work you've done! A good rule of thumb is, Guys if you can see your desired audience (either in front of you or in your peripheral vision) then they have a good view 👍🏻. If you can't see your guests then they don't have the best view either. This isn't a big deal every once in a while, but try not to do a majority of the dance facing away from them. If you are doing a few moves several times, try angling them slightly differently so your guests get different views and get the most bang for your buck out of them!
Always run through your dance the day of your wedding
Always always! Even if it's just a few minutes in a hallway or during your photo-session (your photographer will love it!) no matter how prepared you are, there is no substitute for getting the rust knocked off last-minute! Don't worry about tiny details here, just enjoy and get yourselves comfortable.
Slide your toes
Guys this is for you! If your bride is wearing a long dress, focus on sliding your toes under it as opposed to stepping down on it. This can help eliminate issues and keep you looking fine and in control. Don't think you need to slide the whole foot (this can make you look like the tin man), just the toes. 👍🏻Try not to let the dress bother you and remember, a little step-on here and there is no big deal!
Ladies, if your dress rivals Cinderella's, when you practice in your shoes, grab the crinoline (the fluffy skirt that goes underneath) and practice with it on, it will help you and your partner get used to more volume before the big day!
Remember this dance is for you both, not your guests, do whatever you enjoy and HAVE FUN WITH IT! When you're relaxed and happy your guests will be too. ❤️
Checkout the BetterSway™ First Dance Package to start your best dance today.
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