dancing with the stars costumer randall christensen

Randall Christensen, the man responsible for the slit-up-to-there "DWTS" costumes. Photo by: Donato Sardella. Courtesy: Matchbook Company

Emmy-award winning costumer Randall Christensen has learned something from all the famous ladies he's outfitted on ABC's long-running reality competition "Dancing With the Stars."

"They are absolutely no different than you and me," he says. "I see women when they are most vulnerable, completely bare. They have all kinds of insecurities; things they want to hide, things they want to accentuate."

Inspired by contestant Marie Osmond, Christensen is helping women everywhere celebrate their bodies with his new clothing line, set to debut on QVC in Spring 2011.

"Marie lost so much weight when she was dancing. It was a joy to watch her embrace the sexiness of the costumes," Christensen says of the star, who sells collectible dolls and jewelry on the shopping network.

"I think she put a bug in [QVC's] ear and got the whole thing rolling. They approached me and I couldn't be more delighted."



Expect real clothes (not barely there costumes!) with an emphasis on sexiness and shaping. "Think Old Hollywood glamour incorporated with the romance of the waltz," he says of looks, which include pants, dresses, blouses, wraps, and accessories. "I will be going for a feeling. I want you to slip on one of my skirts and feel the sexiness of a rumba or flirtiness of a cha-cha."

As for fit, "I might have shapewear in some of the pieces like I do with the costumes," says Christensen, who plans to incorporate bling ("I dream in crystals") but "might save that for a wrap or a jacket, something to take a look from day to evening."

Christensen is also developing bridal wear, which seems a logical step beyond the dance floor. "We do Cinderella on the show, so why not do it for a woman's Cinderella day?" he says.

But before either collection hits the market, Christensen is keeping plenty busy with his "Dancing With the Stars" duties. After outfitting the season 11 cast for their promo photos, he gave StyleList some insight into several of the contestants' upcoming ensembles.

Florence Henderson David Hasselhoff Bristol Palin Dancing with the Stars

Florence Henderson (left), David Hasselhoff (center), and Bristol Palin (right). Photos: Bob D'Amico, ABC

Bristol Palin: The political daughter asked for conservative costumes, but Christensen notes, she never said she didn't want to be sexy. "She's young, she's pretty, she's got a nice body and a beautiful smile. There's a way to balance all those things and give her what she wants," says Christensen, who put Palin in a black lace dress with a thigh-high slit for her promo pics.

The Situation: "It's going to be the battle of the abs," Christensen says of "Jersey Shore" star Mike "The Situation" Sorrentino's pairing with six-packed Karina Smirnoff. Don't expect the pumped-up reality star to bare his famous physique on week one, however. "I like to do the opposite of what people expect sometimes," says Christensen, which is what I did with Pamela Anderson last season."

Florence Henderson: "The Brady Bunch" matriarch dazzled Christensen during her first fitting. "She is the mirror-ball trophy herself, and she was busting a move up on that stage -- watch out!" says the costumer, who set aside four long dresses and two short and sassy looks for Henderson. "She headed in the direction I never imagined, much sexier. She said, 'I know what they are expecting me to wear, but I want to try this.' What a feisty, fun lady. I was completely smitten."

David Hasselhoff: The "Baywatch" legend is "open to fun -- yet appropriate -- costuming with [partner] Kym Johnson," says Christensen. "We did a very cool, masculine look for the first dance. Kym likes to incorporate a story line in her costumes, so look for that with this couple."

Jennifer Grey: Christensen is most excited about dressing the "Dirty Dancing" actress. "She's so proud of being 50. She looks fabulous, and she's an icon," he says. He may pay homage to her "Baby" character "but only if it's appropriate."

Michael Bolton: The singer is a "clotheshorse" with a refined sense of style, says Christensen. "We're going to go in a Cary Grant direction with him. He's dancing with Chelsie Hightower and she's much younger, so I want to balance them."

Audrina Patridge: "She's got some body," Christensen says of "The Hills" star/Bongo model, for whom he created "one of the sexiest Viennese waltz costumes I've ever made." Patridge is partnered with Tony Dovolani, who was also very involved in her look, so, says Christensen "expect her to wear some amazing pieces."

Margaret Cho: Comedian Cho "has some of the most amazing tattoos I've ever seen," says Christensen. "They are true art pieces and since she has so many, I have no choice but to work with them. I may even do a rhinestone embellishment."

Rick Fox: The 6-foot-7 basketball star has been paired with tiny two-time champ Cheryl Burke. "We had to put Cheryl in much higher heels than she normally wears," says Christensen. "He's a tall man, but then he smiles and all you see is how charming he is."

Brandy: The singer was "on fire" during her fitting in a sassy feather skirt, says Christensen."She had the same exact attitude as Florence Henderson and I was inspired by the idea that two women of different ages could be so sexy and vibrant and excited about the clothes."

Tune in to see what all the contestants, including actor Kyle Massey and football player Kurt Warner, will be wearing for the season premiere Sept. 20 at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.

In other reality news, check out what "The Bachelor Pad" stylist had to say about dressing his cast.