The most important element of attire for tap dancers is their shoes; they wear special tap shoes that are fitted with metal plates to make characteristic "taps" as they dance. Aside from shoes, costumes for tap dancing vary widely, with performers generally wearing formal attire, according to the National Park Service.
When performing, male tap dancers typically wear three-piece suits, and females generally wear formal or cocktail dresses. There is no set costume or generally required dress code for tap dancers. About.com explains that there are several different types of tap shoes: flat shoes and styles with heels. Which a dancer uses is largely based on preference. Most tap shoes are black, white or beige, according to About.com. They are meant to fit the foot snugly and to be comfortable. Two taps are found on each shoe, and they should be the same width as the shoe.
Another form of tap dancing is called clogging, and requires a slightly different kind of shoe. While traditional tap dancers are light on their feet, cloggers, or hoofers as they are sometimes called, tend to stomp with the whole foot. Shoes worn for clogging may be made from wood, canvas, leather or a combination of these materials.