Dressing for RT by Leia Shaw

RT is in 35 days.

Recently I’ve been asked about appropriate attire at the Romantic Times Booklovers Convention, as well as planning my own wardrobe for the event. The way I describe RT to people who haven’t been there is like a giant party about books. And when it comes to dress, anything goes. Literally.

Last year, I saw people walking around in full steampunk gear, kitty ears, corsets, blazers and heels, tutus, and jeans and t-shirts. Nobody seemed to care if you were covered in glitter or wearing all black. When it comes to the evening parties, which usually have a theme, many people go all out, spending months making or buying an outlandish costume. It’s definitely fun to watch people, and if you like having a reason to dress crazy, it’s extra fun to attend.

For me, I like the idea of dressing up in costume. The little girl inside jumps up and down clapping. But I’m also a bit of a tomboy. Something to remember is you’ll be doing a lot of walking and standing around. Drinking, talking, maybe dancing… It’s also not so easy running up and down to your room a million times to get changed, especially if you’re not staying in the hosting hotel. In my case, comfort is important. I may get dressed to the nines in heels, lipstick, spanx, jewelry, etc. But by the time I walk the many hallways of the hotel, down the elevator or stairs, and to the banquet hall, I’m ready for the heels to come off. Once I start a drink or meal, the lipstick gets wiped off. When I start dancing or wanting to move in any way, the hair goes up and the spanx come off. So within the first hour of partying, I end up barefoot, hair in a ponytail, wearing just my dress. Happens every time. So why bother?

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Maybe that one special moment, the entrance, when you feel pretty and special is worth it. Last year, I used a lot of suitcase space on costumes just for a three second entrance. This year, I’m broke and busy and probably just going to comfort. I applaud those who plan and sew and put together dazzling clothing for RT, I admire your sparkles and fancy boots from a distance, but this year, that will not be me.

Come say hi anyway. I do have one corset I plan to wear, probably just with jeans. And I have a couple funny t-shirts, but I’ll be the boring one, looking all normal and stuff. Another year, when I have more money and time, and maybe aren’t such a baby about walking in heels, I’ll dress up again.

But those of you worrying your little heads off about looking professional, just don’t. RT is cool like that. You can wear anything and still fit in.


About Susan Hanniford Crowley

Paranormal Romance, Fantasy, and Science Fiction Author
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One Response to Dressing for RT by Leia Shaw

  1. Hi Leia. This will be my first time at RT and I’m really excited. I know it will be warm in New Orleans, so I’m planning on casual dress such as capris. I have not thought about costumes and frankly, I wouldn’t know how to pack it all! I’m looking forward to it especially since I have never been to The Big Easy. See you there and . . . laissez le bon temps rouler!

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