Show and Tell: Inside Chalnessa Eames' Dance Bag

Published in the February/March 2010 issue.

Eames on Pillow Rock at Jacob's Pillow

Photo by Karli Kadel

It’s a safe bet that nobody has a dance bag quite like Chalnessa Eames’. The Pacific Northwest Ballet soloist sports a tote full of customized items—most of which were made by PNB members. “We’re so entrepreneurial!” she says. Eames “can’t live without” the wool legwarmers knit by corps member Leah O’Connor, or the cozy wrap made by principal Carrie Imler.


Eames particularly loves her vial of Before perfume, created by corps dancer and fragrance designer Jordan Pacitti. “Recently Jordan's boyfriend had cancer and I lost my mother to cancer,” Eames says. “Jordan created this fragrance with them in mind—both of their names started with ‘B,’ which is where ‘Before’ comes from. It’s something I treasure.”


Eames’ husband, Ash Modha, also made an important contribution: the bronze satchel itself. “Ash has had a clothing line since he was 16,” she says. “This bag is from his Mondetta Performance Gear line.”


The Goods

Clockwise from top: MPG dance bag, soft ballet shoes, lambswool, handmade legwarmers, pointe shoes, reel of pointe shoe ribbon, dental floss, hairbrush, handmade wrap, Altoids (“We’re dancing Jean-Christophe Maillot’s Roméo et Juliette now, and I’ve been passing them out to all the Juliettes!”), hairpin bag, Tiger Balm, Before fragrance, Traumeel, Orajel, rehearsal DVD for Whim W’Him (PNB principal Olivier Wevers’ new company, with which Eames freelances), LUNA bar, deodorant, BlackBerry, hot glue, Emergen-C, Bloch booties, hairspray, MPG warm-up jacket, Smartwater