Meet the Winner of Sparkle in the Spotlight 2018!

Congratulations to Christine Murphy Designs for an Incredible Prize-winning Swarovski-crystallized Dance Costume

“Don’t let anyone dull your sparkle,” declares Christine Murphy, America’s doyenne of custom crystallization. Recently crowned the winner of the Sparkle in the Spotlight 2018 dance costume competition, it’s a motto that has served her well. We find out what gave her winning design the edge.

A Prize-winning Dance CostumeBased in Onalaska, Wisconsin, Christine Murphy Designs is renowned for its couture-worthy strassing technique—the exacting art of composing thousands of Swarovski crystals by hand in such a way as to maximize the play of color and light. Strassing takes hours upon hours of meticulous craftsmanship to build up each shimmering layer into a highly detailed finish worthy of the great couture houses of Paris.

It was a vision of a desert oasis that provided Christine Murphy with her inspiration for the dance costume: across its sand-colored leotard and open-front skirt runs a garland of sapphire blue. Her signature style can be seen in the way she uses Ovation appliqués to build up layer upon layer, creating a sparkling, three-dimensional texture. These are expertly blended with large and small crystal cuts to add depth and intrigue, while heavily encrusted swathes of sapphire blue sweep down to frame a keyhole back, reprised in an elaborate headpiece. “As the anchor, I used Pear and Emerald Cut Sew-ons in Black Diamond Shimmer, Light Colorado Topaz Shimmer, and Golden Shadow—they add weight to the design,” she says. “The next layer is accented with Geometric Kite and Mini Navette Flat Backs, both in Golden Shadow. Then I finished off with a mix of Xirius Round Flat Backs in some of the newest Swarovski colors—Majestic Blue, Light Colorado Topaz Shimmer, Black Diamond Shimmer and Ivory Cream Lacquer.”

The result is a show-stopping sensation that promises to be a highlight of this year’s Dance Teacher Summit Fashion Show in NYC—do look out for it. And if it’s got your creativity fizzing, then check out the competition sponsors: Rhinestones Unlimited has been helping customers create standout designs for 20 years, while Ovation Performance Jewelry & Accessories™ offers stage-ready embellishments with unforgettable wow factor.

Our warmest congratulations go to Christine Murphy Designs, with a special mention for the talented runners-up: Larkin Dance Studio, Elle Baur Designs, Ignite Dance Connections, Ilo Gear, and Stephanie Woe.

Wholesale rhinestones available at RhinestonesU.com.

A Prize-winning Dance Costume