Competition Costumes

Dancers who choose to compete in feiseanna will need to dress in appropriate attire. Here are links to the official CLRG (Irish Dancing Commission) rules and regulations (“Costume Rules” are under the general CLRG rules) –

Female beginner dancers who are new to competitions may choose to wear a black skirt and a white blouse (Peter Pan collar), before making the commitment to a school costume. Alternatively, a black leotard may be worn with the skirt, but the leotard must cover the collarbones and have a full front and a full back (i.e. – no cutaways). The skirt length should fall halfway between the bottom of the bum and the back of the knee crease. Skorts may be worn, as long as the length meets requirements. If too short, the dancer could be dinged for a costume infraction. If too long, it hides a dancer’s legs and can look sloppy while dancing. When wearing a skirt, dancers need to wear bloomers (or cheer shorts) under the skirt. Hair should be styled neatly so that it stays out of the face while dancing. Dancers in U10 or younger age groups are not permitted to wear makeup in competition.

Male beginner dancers should wear a button down shirt, with black pants and tall black dress socks.

Please talk to your instructor, or send an email with any questions.

Teelin currently has several “school costume” options for dancers to compete in grade level competitions. We are in the process of gathering all information to post on the website, so please check back again, or send questions to

There are three Teelin skirts:

  • red Teelin knot skirt – worn by TIDC Kerry Troupe dancers, and also used for all ceili and figure teams (except adult ceili teams)
  • black Teelin knot skirt – worn by TIDC Galway Troupe dancers, and will also be available for grades dancers to order for use in competitions
  • black 3-panel Teelin knot skirt – worn by Teelin Dublin Troupe dancers

Both the Teelin School Dress and the Alternate School Dress may still be worn in grade level competitions.

Males should wear black dress pants with belt, black knee-high socks, and a dress shirt with a red tie (white shirt is fine for beginners, black shirt is best for other levels). The Teelin School Vest is typically worn in Novice and Prizewinner Grade competitions, and is also worn for championship figure teams.

Male champion-level soloists should wear a solo costume that Maureen has approved (see “Solo Costumes” tab below). Dancers must be “all Prizewinner” to wear a solo costume.

Any purchase of a solo costume must be discussed with and approved by Maureen. Please do not purchase a costume before showing it to Maureen. All dancers who compete in a solo costume need to have their “look” approved by Maureen by sending an email to Please direct any questions to Maureen.

Teelin dancers must have ALL dances in Prizewinner Grade before they are permitted to wear a solo costume in competition. (This is a SCHOOL POLICY, not a general competition policy.)

There are many second-hand solo costumes on the market, and it is worth exploring what’s available before committing to the sizable expense of purchasing a new solo costume. Irish dance solo costumes are works of art… and priced as such. Shop the solos for sale at feiseanna. Also, here are a few links to sites listing second-hand solo costumes:

Dance Again Pre-Loved Irish Dance Costumes

Feis Dresses .com

Get That Dress

(Of course, don’t forget to check the Teelin Buy and Sell page to see if anyone within our own school has listed a costume for sale!)

If you are considering having a new solo costume made, the following designers are approved by Maureen. However, please remember to talk to Maureen before placing an order.

Rising Star

Please see Rising Star’s new 2020 Flipbook brochure for costume ordering information. Costume prices have recently been reduced, and shipping is included in the cost. To request a quote, or if you would like further information, please send email to Amber who will be happy to address your questions.


John Carey Design (formerly Siopa Rince)

Doire Dress Design

Celtic Star

Open Wings

Open Wings – Ordering and Process for Clients Each Open Wings dress will be a unique dress, designed with your inspiration and ideas in mind. At Open Wings, Craig designs all dresses and Sam will deal with all your queries throughout the process. Each dress comes with a side piece or crown effect headpiece to match your design, lycra kick pants to match your underskirt lining and a stoned number clip.

We allow 5cm seam allowance down each side-seam and 4cm on the zip along with a 5cm let down. (Please note that pattern matching can not be guaranteed when a dress is altered for length)

An order can be placed by emailing

Once a date is agreed for the collection or dispatch of the dress, a deposit must be paid to secure the booking. The deposit for a dress is £300, a waistcoat £100 and team dress £100. The deposit is non-refundable. Exchange of the deposit to a different client is at the discretion of Open Wings and subject to availability and schedule. (we will always try to accommodate where possible.)

A measurement guide will be provided to the Buyer with clear instructions on how to measure for an Open Wings Costume. Measurements should be received no later than 6 weeks prior to the collection/dispatch date.

We ask you to provide a crystal budget (all our crystals are charged at cost price plus a £40 stoning fee).

Open Wings will provide a 2d representation of the front of the costume up to 2 weeks prior to the dispatch/collection date.

Current style Irish dance solo dresses and vests have at least some stone work (crystals) on them to help increase the pizzazz of the costume onstage. Kris Steeley (aka “Sparkle Master”) is mom of a retired Open Champion dancer / Company dancer, and has been providing bling services to the Teelin family since 2010. Samples of her work can be seen on the Champion wall, and photos can be provided of previous work.

Kris is available to consult with the dress owner on the work desired and add the bling at a reasonable cost, or to provide advice for those brave enough to take on the challenge of adding bling themselves. Consults are free. Bling work is done for the cost of the crystals used, plus a $10/hour fee. Most updates (adding to costumes that already have bling) can be done in an hour. Full bling jobs can range from $200-500, depending on the type of crystals used. Kris can provide a rough estimate of the work desired prior to start, and will consult with the dress owner during the process if questions arise.

Kris Steeley – email

DRESS MEASUREMENTS – Kris is also available for dress measuring consults, and has provided assistance to many champions purchasing dresses from all of the major dressmakers.

The following businesses are familiar with Irish dance costumes, and are good resources if alterations are needed. However, please recognize that a costume can only be altered so much. As kids grow, it may be necessary to buy a new costume instead of attempting to alter to a different size.

Beth Koolbeck
Teelin dressmaker in Woodbine, MD
301-672-7525 | email

Tangs Alterations
alterations business in Mannassas, VA
703-393-8458 | website

Olga De Simone
alterations business in Frederick, MD
301-693-9918 | email

Nee Evangelista
alterations business in Severna Park, MD

As dancers outgrow their costumes, it is recommended that costumes be listed for sale on the Teelin Buy and Sell page. This is a great place to post “looking for” ads, too.