Fun fact about me: I’m a ballet teacher. I mostly work with elite girls between 14 and 18, who have left school to study ballet full-time in the hopes of having a career in an international company. I also teach younger children after school and on the weekend… so it adds up to quite a few hours in the studio.
The class that I get the biggest kick out of every week are the tiny tots (three and four-year-olds). They are by far the most difficult to teach, as there attention spans are ridiculously short and their retention is similar to that of a goldfish, but it’s so much fun.
The first few times I had to teach one of these lessons, I was so embarrassed. I was 16, trying to be cool and a little bit aloof, and the last thing I wanted to do was pretend to be a witch making a magic potion, or to run around the room in search of imaginary butterflies and gasping in despair whenever my non-existent catch flew away.
Then I had an epiphany. I was asking this group of little girls to imagine they were wearing the most beautiful dress. “What colour is your dress?” I asked. Around the circle I got a litany of “pink!”, “purple!”, and the occasional unpopular “blue!”. I came to the last little girl with wayward curls going everywhere- cute as a button and a total ratbag to boot. She’d been giving me grief all lesson, and every time I looked at her I didn’t know whether to laugh or tense. “What colour is your dress?” I asked. “It’s rainbow with sparkles,” she told me.
“Oh my goodness,” I thought. “This child is my spirit animal!” Not only is that definitely something I would have said at her age, but it’s definitely something I’d still choose now. Not only do I love colours and rainbows, but I have this little competitive streak that would have seen me trying to one-up my classmates at that age too. It was a moment when I realised that I hadn’t really grown up all that much, and I totally had the ability to get down to the level of my little budding dancers.
Fast forward another ten years, and I don’t seem to have changed much at all. I saw this rainbow skirt hanging in the shop, and decided that it was the most perfect thing I’d ever seen. Who wants to choose between pink, red, blue and green when you can have them all at once?
I had slight difficulty deciding what colour top I should wear with the skirt, but in the end I went with black. Colours this pretty deserve to be the heros of the outfit, and I kept the rest simple so as not to detract from them.