I’m seriously IN.LOVE. These new leotards by Capezio are simply what I, personally, have always looked for in leotards! This collection was designed by Project Runway Finalist Braden McDonald–and I’d think that being a former dancer with the Mark Morris Dance Company – he’d KNOW his stuff. Sure, we’ve had others before *think* they know dancewear… BUT…. Either a) they made really cute garments, I honestly had to think that they really weren’t made with the serious dancer in mind (it kinda screamed “potential ‘wardrobe malfunction’ here!!!”) or b) they weren’t on the market long enough for the leotards to become really popular. Sad but true, I know.
Sure enough – I think the partnership between Mr. McDonald and Capezio was a good one. On one side – you’ve got an INCREDIBLE dancer-turned-designer, and the other – one of the 800lb gorilla’s of dance apparel. So you’ve got a designer who has worn all types of garments for dance (or at least I’d have a reasonable bet he has) and the other has the might of 100+ years of apparel manufacturing experience at the mass-quantity level needed to be a serious contender worldwide.
So let’s talk collection – this collection has got my favorite three “C”s. Cute, Comfortable, and Conservative.
Cute – this one should be blatantly obvious! The stitch and slash trim on all the pieces really add another dimension to the cuts on the leotards. I’m a fan of geometric type stuff, and to be honest – a lot of times the leotards that have that are either “strappy strappy” (read- accident prone to tangling when putting them on), uncomfortably revealing, OR look really cool but don’t functionally move with me as well as I thought when I bought the leotard. However – none of the items in this collection encounter any of those three problems! All the items feature this really cool trim that Mr. McDonald and Capezio have termed “stitch-and-slash”. It’s not a rough slash, is entirely stitched down, and it lays very well on the leotard.
Comfortable – these are cut with movement in mind. It’s like Mr. McDonald designed them while in rehearsal instead of a design studio. Believe me- class and rehearsal are where ALL the wardrobe issues come out! I’ll speak in a bit on each individual style – but believe me, the comfort of this line is entirely worth the high(er) price tag!
Conservative – I’m generally not a favor of cut-outs on leotards unless it’s for a costume. Each of these three designs are very classically based. These designs are not pushing the “out there” leotard designs that was seen a few years, but rather enhancing the tried-and-true into new and wonderful dimensions!
So let’s talk the actual garments! All of the garments come in adult XS to XL and are made with an 80% Nylon, 20% Spandex blend. The collection is available in seven colors – but not all pieces are available in all colors. The six colors are – Smoke (steel grey), Coal (black), Mermaid Turquoise (pictured as the front image), Clear Sky (light blue – pictured as the back image), Berry crush (a beautiful mulberry color), and Cabernet (deep beautiful burgundy), and Deep Night (dark teal).
The “Downtown Leotard” (Style 10483W) tank leotard is high cut both in front and in back. Meaning VERY little chance of something slipping out of position! The ultra conservative cut is GREAT to wear a bra underneath without it showing. This leotard would be a great choice for auditions where coverage is a must and good first looks go a long ways towards getting the job! The way the stitch-and-slash trim is laid is good for both large and small busts. It’s also a good all-age appropriate leotard – for those just entering teenage uncertainty to those entering the glorious years – it’s been a good look on all ages!
The “West Side Leotard”
The “West Side” leotard is such a PRETTY leotard! Seriously. It’s just stunning both in photos and in person! A conservatively cut front incorporates the idea of a built in short sleeved shrug (it’s firmly attached to the leotard so it’s not going to go anywhere). The beautiful open back isn’t super low but it is low enough to show off a beautiful back! This leotard would be difficult to hide a bra underneath (anything with an open back usually is), but it feels solid and secure on the body. The straight neckline is perfect to show of the décolletage! I think this would also be another very strong audition leotard. The classic lines with a subtle, but eye-catching trim makes this leotard not just a strong audition leotard, but a strong contender for a favorite leotard as well!
The “Riverside Camisole” Leotard
The “Riverside Camisole” (Style 10482W) leotard has beautiful and interesting seaming on the front (also with the stitch-and-slash trim). The vertical layout on the bust area isn’t overwhelming and is quite a nice change from most all-bust trim. The bottom trim of the leotard tapers down to a faux-almost-princess seamed look, and as we all know, princess seams are slimming! The back is also configured in a beautiful triangular-geometric look. The sides of the back straps are sewn so as to minimize those nasty under arm gaps! :-)
The “Call Back Skirt” is also pictured here. It’s a beautiful all fabric skirt with a shorter front than back. It’s also got a beautiful tulip cut on the side of the skirt – perfect for showing off those legs! It’s made of the same 80% nylon, 20% spandex fabric blend that the whole collection is made of.
This leotard is available in seven colors – the berry crush, cabernet, clear sky, coal, mermaid turquoise, and smoke (those colors have been previously mentioned). It is also available in a color called deep night – a teal/dark royal blue combination. The skirt is also available in all of those seven colors. Only the camisole leotard and the skirt are available in that deep night color and it’s the only color that Capezio did not make a picture available of!
The “Brooklyn Biketard”
The final piece in the collection is “Brooklyn Biketard” (Style 10485W) and is an absolute KNOCKOUT! It was created as an athletic look with a feminine flair and even better… IT HAS THUMBHOLES! Yes. Seriously. Imagine squealing with joy right now (or don’t imagine and just DO!)! And even better—the wrist openings are nice and wide. So when you’ve gotten all nice and sweaty in the studio – it’s not a pain to pull those sleeves up and keep on going! The biketard has the stitch-and-slash trim at the wrists and thumbholes, as well as around the waist for a faux-belt type look. The biketard’s shorts are always a nice alternative to wearing tights – or just adding an extra layer for multiple reasons. The back of the garment zips up and the mock neck isn’t too tight (no constricting neckline!). This garment is only available in coal (black – left picture) and smoke (grey – right picture). It would also be another super audition or convention piece!
In summary – I don’t think you could go wrong with any of the pieces in this collection. Hats off to Mr. McDonald to designing a stunning classic collection and I look forward to seeing more from his partnership with Capezio.
Authors Note: We’ve seen the next upcoming pieces for the fall/back to school season and are equally impressed with Mr. McDonald’s choices in style and fabric. It’s not difficult to see why he did so well in the show Project Runway! We’ll do a blog post when those come out too on them!