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Learn how to work with stretch fabrics like mesh and lycra to create wrinkle free dance and skate dresses for all shapes and sizes of women and children.

Let’s talk about a round tummy! …. Are you thinking, “Do we really have to?”

How to make a round tummy look flat (for Ballroom, Country and Ice Skating costumes)

History of a round tummy

The classic, Renaissance female tummy is round and voluptuous signifying health and virility.

Today, that same tummy (belly) shape is one of the things we women love to hate about ourselves because much of  the media in our the global, first-world society says that we should all have pancake-flat tummies.

In active sports such as competitive Skate, Dancesport and Country events, our bodies are always on display and critiqued no matter what the level of dance or skate.

(Ugh, this means we need to look as good as we can in our costumes no matter what our performance level.)

Do I think we dancers and skaters should have strong abdominal muscles?

Yes, I do; we perform better when in good physical condition.  However, sometimes even the leanest, strongest woman can have a round belly she wishes she could get rid of.

In a nutshell: (on average) the curvier the woman, the larger the belly.  This means it is even more important to camouflage the body parts you consider negative so the body curves you like can be highlighted.


How to make a round tummy look flatter - for Ballroom, Country and Skate costumes

Can I make a round tummy look flat?

Is this possible? 

Oh yeah!

In today’s video I show you an easy way to camouflage that round, fluffy belly so it looks flatter and slimmer – no matter what size or shape it is.

I also share a few of my favorite sewing hacks and fitting techniques.   Many times over the decades did I use these tips on ballroom dance and skating clients to help them look slimmer and feel better in their competition dress so they perform their best.

Look at the photo to the right.  It is the same dress as the photo above, which was taken during the first fitting.  The skirt is WAY too tight around her tummy which makes it look very pronounced.  I dare say it is the first thing you see when you look at the photo…. What woman wants that?

To remedy the situation and make her tummy look more flat, I added and extra skirt panel to this flared skirt.  Like magic, the additional looseness around the waist and hips makes her tummy look flatter.


(P.S. This blog was originally publish April, 2018.  It was updated with more text and photos January, 2023.)

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Learn how to work with stretch fabrics like mesh and lycra to create wrinkle free dance and skate dresses for all shapes and sizes of women and children.



Fitting and sewing hacks for a flat looking belly

snip waistband on fishnets and tights for smoother looking dance, ballroom dance, artistic roller skating and figure skating dresses


1) Want an easiest, inexpensive, no-sew hacks so you can feel better and help your tummy look flatter?

Cut the waistband on your hose, opaques or tights.

Yes,  I am serious!

Cut that damn thing.  It is uncomfortable to wear and not figure- flattering.

Look at the difference in the blue dress on the left and the silver dress on the right!  Blue dress waistband is bumpy.  the silver dress waistband is nice and smooth.

Check out this blog post for details on how to cut the waistband without destroying your hose, tights or opaques:  How To Snip A Waistband For A Smoother Look.

Latin dance skirt fitting and sewing alterations. How to make a round tummy look flat and fix a Latin dance skirt that is too short and too tight. Starring Duffy Betterton co-owner of Dance Dress Couture.

2) What if you bought a dance or skate costume at a great price, but it needs altering to make the skirt look flattering on your tummy?

If this is the case, finish checking out this blog and then visit a different blog of mine with fitting and sewing hacks for camouflaging a round tummy and loosening a skirt that is too short and too tight:  Latin Dance Skirt Alterations to Fix a Short Tight Skirt.

3) Check out my Pinterest boards for more costume ideas that may help you look and feel your best in your ballroom, Country or skate dresses ... and share this post with all your dancing, skating, sewing friends!

Be sure to watch the video below for more details.  It is short, but will knock your knickers off. 🙂

4) Lastly, all the tips and techniques I share with you apply to all types of Ballroom, Latin, Country and Skate costumes - no matter what size or shape the tummy is.  In this case, this fitting and sewing hack also applies to evening gowns and other formal wear and other every day street clothes.

I look forward to reading your comments below!



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    8 replies to "How To Make A Round Tummy Look Flat"

    • Maria

      Hi what can I do with wide hips to look smaller and bust

      • Teresa Sigmon

        Hi Maria,

        The simplest way to make your hips look smaller is to draw the viewer’s eye AWAY from them so they have to look at a different part of the dress. Meaning you have to give the viewer something really cool to look at that is very far away from your hips. Make sense?

        Adding fringe to the bust area is one option because fringe moves so much it creates eye-catching volume so they will watch the fringe, not stare at your hips. Adding a large flower focal on one shoulder and the opposite wrist could also work because the large flower makes the viewer look at your shoulder and wrist.

        Another option is to use a dark, non-shiny fabric on your hips and a lighter, brighter color on the chest and sleeves. Check out this blog for more fabric ideas.

        Lastly, create a softer curve from your waist to hips. Meaning, that if you have an overdress that is looser around your waist and belly, it can make the waist look a little bigger so the hips look smaller. This blog with a slightly draped bodice will give you the idea of what I mean. https://seamssensational.com/long-lean-lines-latin-dance-dress/

        Put your dress on, take some selfies with the dress the way it is. Then begin playing with ways you can draw the viewer’s eye to a different part of your body and the dress.

        Good luck! Keep me posted.

    • Edith Kruger

      Can’t open how to make a round tummy look flat

      • Teresa

        Edith, what do you mean you can’t open it? The video didn’t open? You obviously opened the blog since you left a comment. When I opened the blog just now everything was okay. I don’t know what kind of problem you are having. Maybe it was a weird internet glitch. Please try to open it again.

    • Aanchal

      Bust fittings in case of smaller ones
      Shoulder n armhole fittings in relation to necklines high,narrow, deep,broad, collar

    • Lisa

      Thank you, I learned your tip. I will now fix my best dress or skirts to fit my look. I was about to donate them.

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