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Meet Shelly Shai of Shelly’s Dance & Costume

Today we’d like to introduce you to Shelly Shai.

Shelly started Shelly’s Dance & Costume at 25 years old in 1982. Her passion for fitness and dance came about when she took up ice skating as a child.

Being that it was the 80′s and the style was leotards leg warmers and leggings, Shelly decided to open up her own dance/fitness store where she would carry affordable dance and activewear (back then it was known as aerobic wear) for the average customer.

Shelly originally started her store on Santa Monica Blvd and it was just 186 square feet! About the same size as her store’s dressing room. She quickly outgrew her closet of a store and moved into what is now Shelly’s but at the time was only 1,000 square feet.

Shelly’s didn’t become a one-stop-shop for dance, fitness, and costumes overnight. She began carrying costumes year round when a customer came in looking for a pair of angel wings. Shelly told her that she would have them in a few days. It was at that moment she decided she wanted to carry costumes and accessories in addition to her activewear and dancewear.

A few days later she had the angel wings for the customer along with a dozen other wings and a handful of costumes. The rest is history.

As years went on and business grew larger, she kept expanding the store to what it is now. Shelly’s now carries a large variety dancewear, dance shoes, activewear, costumes, accessories, tights, gloves, hats, make-up and much much more!

What makes Shelly’s unique is the customization. People come into Shelly’s w/ ideas for costumes or dance costumes for performances. Shelly’s onsite seamstress creates costumes from scratch or alters existing costumes.

Shelly’s is well known across Southern California, with celebrities, costume designers, musicians, movie studios frequently coming in.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
There are always struggles when you have your own business. The challenge is always the competitors.

Now that Amazon, other large retail stores, and eCommerce websites have become more popular, small businesses such as mine is no longer our customer’s first stop.

Our customers realize they get an experience when they come into Shelly’s. We make it fun to shop for dancewear and costumes.

Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Shelly’s Dance & Costume – what should we know?
Shelly’s Dance & Costume carries dancewear, dance shoes, activewear, year round costumes for kids and adults.

Shelly’s has been in the industry for over 30 years and has been a landmark for LA locals for years.

You can often find dancers, moms, kids, stylists, production companies, movie studios, celebrities and college students shopping at Shelly’s.

Tutus, Leotards, Unitards, Bike Shorts, Legwarmers, Leggings, Tights, Dance Bags, Wings, Hair Buns, Colored Contacts are just some of the variety of products that can be found at Shelly’s.


Contact Info:

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  1. jenni

    January 14, 2017 at 22:44

    I love shopping at Shelly’s. Their handmade Tutus are the best and anything that needs to be altered can be done onsite. Best store in LA that sells Dancewear. Affordable!

  2. Alberto Angulo

    January 16, 2017 at 22:12

    This is where I got my very first pair of leggings. They are not cheap quality material and have lasted me as long as I can remember since I was a college student at UCLA taking aerobics classes. I have also gotten several pairs of leotards and slouch socks to complete my outfit. I teach Zumba classes and some of these leggings still have their shape! I got to know about this one Alan Medelson from kcal nine news advertised it many years ago. I love coming to this place when I need to get certain items that I cannot find anywhere else. This place rocks!

  3. cosplay contacts

    April 26, 2017 at 14:46

    This is awesome & excellent picture.

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