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Saturday, September 26, 2009

Trinidad Hotel List

Ambassador Hotel -
Carnetta's Inn-
Chaconia Hotel-
Crews Inn Hote-l
Crowne Plaza Hotel -
Hilton Trinidad -
Kapok Hotel-
Carlton Savannah-
Hyatt Regency Trinidad-
Courtyard By Mariott Trinidad-
The Chancellor Hotel-
Normandie Hotel -
Coblentz Inn -

Individuality En Masse

With 4 months and 19 days left before Carnival I know that the die hard Carnival stalwarts already have their airline ticket, hotel accommodation booked and, most importantly, THE costume in your band of choice secured.

Now , it is time to decide on Monday wear outfits, get your footwear sorted out and plan accessories. I have lots of people emailing asking for advice on boots, makeup and even spray on tans so I know you ladies are not sleeping on getting organized for Carnival 2010.

What I am getting from speaking with masqueraders who are in the throes of planning is that everyone wants to do something a little different, a little unique and with a little bit of personalization when it comes to their overall looks for Carnival. There are those who want to cross the "stage" in heels, switching footwear along the route, some who plan on doing special bras or corsets and others are planning on adding more to their costume; more beads, more feathers, more bling! The trend of individuality is ripe for 2010.

I have to confess that I too will be doing something a little extra special with my costume, nothing too elaborate but just something additional that I have been working on, with the guidance of a certain costume designer friend. And, surprise surprise, most of my friends and section mates are doing the SAME thing as well! Each diva is doing something "different" to their costume.

So, for those of you thinking of sprucing up your costume or just making changes to suit you I have a little bit of advice on how to do so:

*If you want to do elaborate changes to the costume, how about letting the section or band leader know that you have certain ideas in mind. This is not really necessary as it is YOUR costume after all (once paid for in full) and you can add or remove decoration on the costume as you see fit, however most section leaders are willing to work on amendments to your costume once it can be done within a certain time frame. Remember getting your costume on time is also important. They can also suggest persons who can provide the assistance you are looking for.

*Customizing changes to your costume is relatively easy if you are a crafty person or have an eye for design but getting a sample of a feather, appliqué or bead can also help in matching items to your costume. Again, it does not hurt to ask the band or section leader for a sample to guide you in choosing the right colours.

*Remember to do changes tastefully and in moderation, as much as you want to stand out let it not be for the person who added green feathers to a bronze costume! The divas below added a collar to Caged Canary and extra contrasting plumes to Kiskadee, outstanding but also complements the costume!

*Tailoring a costume to give you a better fit or getting rid of elements you do not like is also a way to set yourself apart. For instance, the back of Charmeuse has no beads or fabric, you can add fabric to the back of the costume for more coverage by either reusing some of the fabric to the front (shortening it) or buying matching fabric to add to the back. If you have a small headpiece option that comes without the fabric you can also add fabric to that headpiece and get the same effect as having the large headpiece. Similarly, you can remove the tassels from Habotai and add beads instead. And if you do not like the underwear that comes with your costume you can always get more comfortable fitting ones, to tell you the truth those spandex bikinis are so tight they squeeze the muffintop out of even the slender of hips! I know someone who had underwear made to match her costume this year! And of course if you prefer a corset over a tankini or would like to submit your own bra for decoration contact the section or band leader ASAP.

*Finally, sometimes you do not need huge changes to make a big impact. It can be as simple as having the right footwear, decorated to match, or changing accessories that come with your costume or having the BODY to go with the costume as well. All kudos to the gym bunnies working hard to put the best body on the road for Carnival, that is also an accessory that can make any costume look good!

Happy Carnival planning, the countdown is on!
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