Before the Dancing Dolls became reality TV stars with lavish costumes that shimmer when they buck, Dianna Williams (better known as Miss D) sketched their costumes in her living room. Under the guidance of a woman named Mrs. Pat, she learned about costume design and styling. And after a manufacturer would create her concepts, she’d go to work bedazzling them with her weapon of choice, a hot glue gun.
SIGN UP FOR OUR NEWSLETTER:
“I designed every costume the Dancing Dolls have worn since the team was founded. I sat and drew the costumes. I decided where the cloth was going to go, where the sequins were going to go,” she said passionately during a candid chat. “Most people don’t know that for the first 14 years that the dancing dolls were around. I did the Dancing Doll uniforms all by hand. I did everything I needed to do for those girls costumes.”
Miss D has always been obsessed with dolls and dollhouses. “I always used to make my dolls dance,” she revealed.
Dianna started the Dancing Dolls when she was 21. She began coaching straight out of college with the support of her grandmother who owned a daycare — the Pied Piper Playhouse where the Dancing Dolls started. “She allowed me to have practice there. She allowed me to start the group there. She sewed their very first dancing uniforms.”
When it came to getting uniforms, a dance company Jazzy Dancers was pivotal in clothing the girls. Mrs. Pat and Mr. Skip owned the only dance company in Jackson, Mississippi that sold costumes. “She told me what kind of boots I needed, what type of fish nets and tights to buy the girls because I had no clue.”