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Tribal costumes are the ethnic garb worn by the tribes that have danced the same dances for generations. The body - even sometimes the face - is covered almost completely. The hands and sometimes the feet are exposed. You don't see a bare leg, and usually not even a bare arm. Traditional garb has always been of natural materials, such as cotton, linen, and wool, and the jewelry that may or may not embelish the costume includes coral, wood, stone, and/or bone or ivory beads, and may also include coins and other ethnic metal trimming. Scarves are used on the hip and/or head, but not necessarily

Cabaret costumes are the kind of outfit worn in night clubs. Sequins and glass beads and glass fringe lavishly cover the costume. Cabaret costumes come in two varieties - the beledi dress frequently worn in Egypt, and the bra/belt/skirt/veil combination that most people think of when they think of a bellydancer. In Egypt, even with the bra and hipbelt, the midrif must by law be covered, even if it's only with a skin covered mesh. Here in the states, coin bras and belts are often used in the cabaret costume, but I never saw a dancer in Egypt wear a coin bra and belt. Beaded fringe added to the bra, belt, or even the beledi dress are used to accent and show the dancer's movements.


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