Coming of Age, Houston-Style

What Is the 'Texas Dip'?

The down-low on this debutante staple.

By Gwendolyn Knapp May 29, 2018 Published in the June 2018 issue of Houstonia Magazine

What is it?

Often considered the most extreme of all bows, the Texas Dip sets Lone Star State debs apart. The debutante lunges, stacks her knees, lowers herself all the way to the ground, and folds her body over her gown, arms outstretched, while smiling at the audience under a spotlight.

Where does it come from?

It’s believed the Texas Dip originated in the early 1900s as a variation on the St. James Bow, a conservative curtsy that debutantes first performed to honor Queen Victoria.

How hard is it?

Unlike the St. James Bow, this move requires strength in addition to grace. The deb, wearing high heels, shouldn’t falter, wobble, or trip on her dress.

How do you learn it?

It can take months to master. Some are naturals, while others are not, which is why some young women hire ballet instructors to train them. Others just learn from family and friends.

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