Stephen Plante’s three jobs keep him constantly changing his clothes.
Between performances with City in Motion Dance Theater and the Owen/Cox Dance Group, the 23-year-old Kansas City dancer works at Latteland and Christopher Elbow Artisan Chocolates. So his daily attire ranges from body-skimming leotards to coffee stain-concealing dark denim and cozy layers of sweaters and scarves.
“If I do anything after work, I have to change,” Plante says, because after double shifts at the coffee and chocolate shops, “I smell like a mocha.”
There are three things that all of Plante’s ensembles have in common: clean lines, lots of color and a low price tag.
“Nothing in my wardrobe cost more than $30 or $40,” Plante says. The only exceptions: a custom leotard he bought from Kansas City-based Eleve Dancewear and a pair of cobalt blue Dolce & Gabbana glasses from LensCrafters.
Plante is super-picky when it comes to buying new clothes. Menswear that fits his muscular legs and narrow shoulders is rare. Same goes for garments that work in the dance studio and the coffee shop.
He might not have a ton of clothes, but he’s good at mixing them up to create new outfits.
“My trick is finding a new way to blend,” he says. “I might get a new pair of socks, cuff my pants, or switch up the shoes and jacket.”
Plante sees a lot of parallels between fashion and dance. Both are forms of self-expression that involve the body — and both demand a knack for improvisation.