Step-by-Step Guide: Adding Sparkle to Dance Costumes with Rhinestones

Step-by-Step Guide: Adding Sparkle to Dance Costumes with Rhinestones

Imagine stealing the spotlight on the dance floor, not just with your killer moves, but also with a dazzling, rhinestone-studded costume that turns heads. Whether you’re a professional dancer or just someone who loves to dance, adding rhinestones to your dance costume can take your performance to another level.

Key Takeaways

  • Rhinestones in dance costumes play an essential role in amplifying performance aesthetics, highlighting the dancer and expressing personal style. Three popular types are glass, crystal, and acrylic rhinestones.
  • Essential tools and materials for rhinestoning include high-quality adhesives (specifically designed for rhinestones), various types of rhinestone applicators, tweezers, a rhinestone sorting tray, and a lint-free cloth.
  • The costume should be appropriately cleaned and prepared for rhinestoning, ensuring the removal of any sweat, skin cells, or detergent residues that could hinder effective rhinestone adhesion.
  • Plan the design strategically, considering the costume’s motion and how the design will look from all angles. Use a mock placement method to test the design before final application.
  • The rhinestoning process requires careful application of the right adhesive, precise placement of rhinestones, and sufficient setting and drying times to ensure longevity and visual appeal of the costume.
  • Lastly, maintaining the rhinestoned costumes involves gentle cleaning methods, correct storage practices, and proactive troubleshooting for loose rhinestones. Regular inspections and immediate repairs preserve the costume’s brilliance and lengthen its lifespan.

Understanding Rhinestones and Their Use in Dance Costumes

To elevate your performance impact, rhinestones prove themselves as invaluable additions to any dance costume. Sparkling under the stage lights, they draw the audience’s eye and lend an air of sophistication. Dive into the fascinating world of rhinestones to learn about the types available and their benefits in dance costumes.

Types of Rhinestones

Located on the glamourous spectrum’s higher end, rhinestones exist in various forms. Out of the multitude, three types stand out for their popularity within the dance scene: glass, crystal, and acrylic rhinestones.

  • Glass rhinestones, crafted from molded glass, glisten brilliantly with multi-faceted cuts. A defining feature is their chameleon-esque ability to adapt to costume colors.
  • Crystal rhinestones, perhaps the most lavish of the trio, are derived from lead glass. They shine with a brilliance unmatched by their counterparts, with the trade-off being an increased price tag.
  • Acrylic rhinestones serve as cost-effective contenders. While trailing in the brilliance category compared to glass and crystal, they excel in their lightweight nature, easy maintenance, and versatile range of colors.

Benefits of Adding Rhinestones to Dance Costumes

Rhinestones act as more than mere costume embellishments—they are a tool for self-expression and performance augmentation. A few notable advantages include:

  • Amplification of Costume Aesthetics: Rhinestones, with their sparkling allure, accentuate costume designs and draw attention to the dancer’s movements.
  • Dancer Highlight: Rhinestones captivate the audience’s attention, guiding their gaze towards the dancer and emphasizing impactful moments.
  • Personalized Style Demonstration: A reflection of individual aesthetics, rhinestones afford dancers the freedom to express their unique style.

Stepping into the stage radiates a different level of confidence when bedecked in a rhinestone-studded dance costume. Besides their standout shine, they further enrich the dance spectacle, lending an unmatched vibrancy and charm.

Essential Tools and Materials for Rhinestoning

Essential Tools and Materials for Rhinestoning

As you embark on the vibrant journey of rhinestoning your dance costume, certain tools and materials become key players. These include high-quality adhesives, different types of rhinestones applicators, and of course, the sparkling rhinestones themselves.

Choosing the Right Adhesive

Adhesives play a crucial role in holding your rhinestones securely onto the costume. Understand, not all adhesives are created with rhinestones in mind. Some popular choices in the dance community include E6000, Gem-Tac, and Aleene’s Original “Tacky” Glue.

E6000, known for its strong holding power and flexibility, stands as an ideal option for stretchable dancing costumes. It’s resistive to harsh conditions such as water and high temperatures. The downside is it can potentially release fumes until it’s fully cured.

Gem-Tac is a water-based adhesive that’s easy to clean up. It holds the rhinestones securely but lacks the robustness of E6000.

For beginners, Aleene’s Original “Tacky” Glue offers a quick, straightforward solution. It’s non-toxic, easy to use, and good for kids’ projects. However, it isn’t as strong or flexible as other glue options.

Keep in mind, your choice of adhesive is dictated by your particular needs, the quality of the rhinestones, and the fabric of your dance costume.

Rhinestone Applicators and Other Tools

A rhinestone applicator is another invaluable tool for your rhinestone project. Basic rhinestone applicators come with a wax-tip which helps pick and place the rhinestones easily. But, for detailed and precise work, a precision applicator tool is advisable.

Having good quality tweezers is equally important and comes handy when manually adjusting or picking up rhinestones. Tweezers with fine tips offer more precision.

Other useful tools include a rhinestone sorting tray for easy organization, a lint-free cloth for cleaning up excess glue, and a permanent marker for marking rhinestone placements on your costume.

Remember, no matter how glittering your rhinestones are, they cannot shine without the right tools and materials. So, carefully choose your adhesive, obtain a suitable rhinestone applicator and complementing tools, and let your dance costume shine as brightly as your performance.

Preparing the Costume for Rhinestoning

Preparing the Costume for Rhinestoning

Having the right tools and adhesives for your rhinestone project is just one aspect of the process. Equally important is preparing your costume in a way that ensures your rhinestones will stick effectively and create the impact you’re aiming for. Here we’ll dive into the steps you’ll want to take in to effectively clean your costume and plan your design.

Cleaning the Costume Surface

Think of costume cleaning as prepping your dance attire canvas for your rhinestone art. It’s a vital first step before introducing adhesives and rhinestones. Giving your costume a thorough cleaning will remove sweat, skin cells, and any fabric softeners or detergents – all of which could jeopardize the adhesion of your rhinestones.

Dry cleaning is one way to deep clean the fabric and prep it for your bling. Some costumes may require hand washing with a gentle detergent. Always check the garment care tag before deciding on your cleaning method. Remember, the goal here is a completely clean surface that’ll allow your adhesive and rhinestones to stick optimally.

Planning Your Design

Just as an artist wouldn’t start painting without a sketch, you shouldn’t start attaching rhinestones without a well-thought design. A random application of rhinestones might not bring out the sparkle effect you’re hoping for. Instead, consider sketching your design on a piece of paper or using a dressform if you own one.

Remember, your costume will be in motion on the dance floor, so your rhinestone design needs to create an impact from all angles. Experiment with different designs and rhinestone colors – blue sapphire, crystal clear, ruby rose, or even multicolor – to see what works best for the costume’s color and your dance routine.

Before you start attaching the rhinestones, do a mock placement. Lay out your costume flat and arrange the rhinestones according to your design. This step allows you to make any necessary revisions without damaging your costume. Any modifications during this stage can save you both time and the effort of reattaching stones in the later stages.

With a clean costume and a stellar design plan in place, you’re now ready to make your dance costume shine as brightly as your performances.

The Rhinestoning Process

Going beyond preparation and design, the rhinestoning process involves key steps of applying adhesive, setting rhinestones and allowing appropriate drying times. Each sub-step aids in ensuring a long-lasting and spectacular sparkle to the dance costume.

Applying Adhesive

For a rhinestone to stick securely, an adhesive application forms an essential part of the process. Choose the appropriate adhesive for your rhinestones; gemstone glue serves as a popular choice, famed for its strong bond and clear drying properties. Squeeze out a dot of adhesive on to a non-absorbent surface. Remember, apply just enough glue that, when you press the rhinestone onto the cloth, it’ll surround the edge but not spill out. This moderation ensures both secure attachment and clean aesthetics.

Placing Rhinestones

For the placement of rhinestones, a rhinestone applicator tool often proves indispensable. Pick up a rhinestone with the wax tip of the tool, dip the back into the adhesive, and gently position it onto your dance costume according to your design. Maintaining an equal distance between each stone, if that’s part of the design, helps achieve a consistent, professional appearance.

Setting and Drying Times

After placing the rhinestones, the setting and drying times are crucial. Most adhesives set within minutes, but for a dance costume meant for strenuous activity, it’s safer to let it dry overnight, eliminating the risk of the rhinestones falling off during a performance. Patience here ensures durability, as rushing this process could compromise the stability of the rhinestones.

Working meticulously through these stages increases the longevity and visual appeal of your rhinestoned dance costumes. Remember, a carefully executed rhinestoning process transforms a basic dance costume into an eye-catching performance piece.

Maintenance and Care for Rhinestoned Costumes

Crafting a rhinestoned dance costume isn’t simply about applying sparkling stones. It’s also about ensuring the brilliance lasts through multiple performances. Proper care and routine maintenance increase the lifespan of your sparkly attire. This section outlines the most effective cleaning and storage methods along with some helpful tips for repairing loose rhinestones.

Cleaning and Storage Tips

Keep your rhinestoned dance attire shining brighter for longer by incorporating certain cleaning and storage practices. When it comes to cleaning, a gentle approach is key. Abstain from aggressive scrubbing or using harsh detergents. Rather, a light wipe with a damp, lint-free cloth should suffice in removing superficial dust and stage makeup pigments.

Avoid soaking your costume underwater. Water might weaken the adhesive bonds, causing rhinestones to dislodge. Instead, spot-clean stained areas and air-dry your garment to retain its overall integrity.

Retaining the shape of your attire also contributes to longer sparkle life. Refrain from folding or crumpling your rhinestoned garment to avoid unnecessary stress on the rhinestones and their adhesive bonds. Ideally, hang your costume in a garment bag, maintaining a safe distance from other pieces to eliminate friction and prevent transfer of colors.

Repairing Loose Rhinestones

Eventually, despite the best care and highest quality adhesive, some rhinestones may become loose. Getting ahead of repairs ensures your costume continues to shine with every twirl.

Work proactively, inspect your costume regularly for loose rhinestones. Keep a set of rhinestoning tools handy, such as quality-grade adhesive, an applicator tool, and spare rhinestones that match your existing ones.

When you detect loose rhinestones, initiate a swift repair process. The early attachment of errant rhinestones mitigates further loosening and preserves your costume’s Visually stunning appeal. Besides, it’s quite a simple process: apply adhesive to the back of the stone, place it in the correct position using the applicator tool, then allow adequate time for the adhesive to cure. This simple act of vigilant maintenance keeps your rhinestoned dance costume looking its sparkling best for many performances.


So you’ve discovered the art of rhinestoning dance costumes. It’s not just about adding sparkle, but also maintaining the shine and durability for many performances. Remember, the type of rhinestone and cleaning process can significantly impact the final result. And don’t forget the importance of planning your design before you start attaching those glimmers. Care for your costume doesn’t stop at creation. Proper cleaning, storage, and proactive repair of loose rhinestones will keep your attire looking its best. With these tips, you’re ready to create and care for your rhinestoned dance costume. Here’s to many brilliant performances!

It’s important to use the right adhesive and application techniques to securely attach rhinestones to various materials, whether you’re embellishing leotards, skirts, or accessories. Additionally, consider the placement and design of the rhinestones to maximize visual impact. The Dance Store recommends starting with a small, manageable project to practice your technique before tackling more complex designs, ensuring each piece sparkles perfectly under stage lights.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can rhinestones enhance dance costumes?

Rhinestones contribute to the sparkle and sophistication of dance costumes. Their quality and strategic placement can significantly amplify the visual appeal of the attire.

Should I plan a design before attaching the rhinestones?

Yes, it’s crucial to plan your design before attaching rhinestones. This ensures aesthetically pleasing distribution and optimal adhesion.

What importance is placed on cleaning a dance costume for rhinestone adhesion?

Cleaning the dance costume ensures that dirt or oil doesn’t hinder the rhinestones’ adhesion. It’s an essential step to maintain the rhinestones’ longevity.

How can I maintain my rhinestoned dance costume?

Proper maintenance includes carefully cleaning and storing the costume. Avoid harsh detergents and use suitable storage methods to prevent damage and maximize the attire’s brilliance.

What should I do if a rhinestone comes loose or falls off?

If rhinestones come loose or fall off, repair them proactively. This keeps the costume visually appealing and ensures the durability of the design.