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I've just come from there. The queue is HUGE! It took me an hour just to get in. It's just Beauty and Don Q from the ballet side with the odd Swan Lake costume and R&J shoe. And lots of unsused pointes - Yoshida and Durante have such tiny feet! Some beautiful tutus! But the SB costumes are even more hideous close up - I can't believe Dowell actually said yes to these designs! Lots of impressive names like Adam Cooper and Mukhamedov sewed in. I like the Don Q stuff - the white and gold matador costumes are much snazzier than the rasberry-coloured ones we have now. But the jackets are so heavy and seem so hot - I don't know how the dancers managed to walk in them, much less dance in them. It was quite funny to see all these people trying soldiers uniforms, fat-suits and outlandish hats on. They must have come with thousands of pounds to spend. I was really hoping for a fan or something small but they didn't have any nice accessories left. The rest is all out of my price range!

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I went too - I am exhausted after having got the first train into London this morning, but still only actually getting into the sale at 1pm after having queued for 4 hours!!:eek: The queue was a sight to behold I can tell you - stretching right around ROH and then some... and the queue to pay was almost as long - I stood in that queue for over 1 1/2 hours!

It was fabulous in there, and a great cameraderie with the rest of the "shoppers" - everyone was saying, "ooh that's nice, who wore that?" all the time, and everyone was ooh-ing and ahh-ing over strangers in the changing rooms, doing each other's hooks up and saying how wonderful we all looked! I had such a fun day! It was great looking through all the costumes and reading the name tapes to see who had worn them (during an enthusisatic shrieking session, a cameraman asked to film my friend and I browsing the racks, so if you have CNN you might see us!). I could have bought so much more, it was really an Aladdin's cave in there. It was also hard to look at the costumes while you were holding another one - they are so heavy and bulky and there wasn't much space to move - the Floral Hall really was packed with racks of costumes. People seemed to be mostly interested in dressing up rather than ballet or opera though I thought - there were people wanting costumes for historical re-enactment type things, and art/fashion students. I would have loved to have seen the tutus before the sale started, I wish they had had a preview. There weren't many tutus left by the time I got there.:(

I bought Marianela Nunez's "friend of Kitri" purple dress from Act III Don Quixote. It is a lovely dress with layers and layers of coloured net underneath, it feels so Spanish with all the ruffles. I also got Zenaida Yanowsky's Garland Dance dress from Sleeping Beauty, (pale green with coloured ribbons) it is beautiful! That SB was the first thing I ever saw at ROH. Both dresses fit me so now I have to find an occasion to wear them! They are hanging on my wall at the moment - any ideas on what to do with them?! I don't have a wardrobe to put them in. Should I take more care?:confused:

And I got Nicola Tranah's Fandango shoes with the red heels from Don Q - I love the dance so much, and I will have to learn it now I have the shoes, haha! And finally a pair of Zenaida's cast-off pointe shoes, which amazingly, are my size and fit me perfectly!:)

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Hi Lolly,

This sounds like my favourite way to spend a day and I am so happy that you got to go, *and* found pretty things which you will enjoy! Ballet sales are my favourite (they are the only things which ever fit me) but we don't have them here too frequently......although the NYC Opera does have a thrift shop on 23rd St...esp. near Halloween it is great fun.

If at all possible these dresses need to be on padded hangers; ideally, they ought to be stored flat, if at all heavy--otherwise the weight of the skirts will pull at and weaken the shoulder seams. Cover them with something made of cotton--NOT plastic!--so they are protected from light and dust. I live in an old house with very few closets, so I store all my costume-y or old clothes on racks in cloth garment bags---the sort in which you can hang multiple garments.

Be sure to stuff the shoes--the red-heeled ones sound wonderful:)

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Thank you for the advice Juliet! The dresses are quite heavy, both just over knee length with boned bodices, and they both have loops attached to the skirt part inside to hook onto the hanger so the straps don't carry all the weight. They are gorgeous - I am going to leave them on my wall until I find a cotton bag to store them in - I woke up this morning and saw them hanging there and was so happy!

The shoes are lovely - black suede with red cuban heels and a big gold buckle on the top!

The sale was the first one since 1996, I don't know how often they have them but I think they should have one every year!

I wish I had taken some photos of us trying things on (I forgot I had a camera with me) so I could remember what it was like there and what costumes I liked but didn't buy. Also you can't tell from a photo that the tutu you are wearing doesn't have the hooks done up at the back! Gosh some of those dancers are TINY! It was handy knowing the names of the dancers as we knew whose costumes would never fit - "Yoshida? Nope. Tattersall? Nope..."!!

Now if only I had bought Ivan Putrov or Johan Kobborg's Basilio costume, or William Trevitt's Bluebird shoes, or...or...;)

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I am past green. I am in deep sorrow indigo.

My favourite production (costuming, I mean) of Sleeping Beauty and I didn't get to go-----because I didn't know about it..... That's no excuse, in my book....

I guess it will have to be eBay or plaintive queries--after all, people do tire of thiings they buy, or grow out of them or......

I loved, loved, loved some of those costumes........I don't care about shoes, I want the clothes!



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Don't worry Juliet, check ebay regularly! People were talking in the queue to get in about how they would sell things there if they overspent - and how they would check there if what they wanted had gone by the time we got in.

I will email ROH too and ask what they are doing with the surplus - I am sure they won't want to take bits and pieces back to Wales.:)

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