This season, the theatricality of clownery is taking over fashion. Christopher John Rogers began the craze with his pre-fall 2023 collection featuring a magnificent ivory white clown suit decorated with silk flowers. Then, at the spring 2023 couture shows in Paris, the topic seemed to reach its peak. Dior showcased a fancy clown collar inspired by Josephine Baker’s wardrobe, Armani Privé went with sparkling harlequin prints and patterns, and Chanel had top hats and bows that allude to a ringleader. Even Marni’s fall 2023 show in Japan hinted at the high-volume, unusual shapes and silhouettes typically seen with the character’s outfit.
The most fashionable clown of all time is Pierrot, a pantomime stock character tied to the 17th-century Italian troupe of performers in Paris, and it has been a source of inspiration for many designers, ranging from John Galliano to Vivienne Westwood. Bode has reinterpreted the legendary costume multiple times, and unisex hosiery brand TYT released magical clown-printed tights and skirts in a spectrum of colors with funny and spooky faces. Sasha Marie Bell also got in on the trend after finding a Jack in the Box at her boyfriend’s house in Italy that had been passed down through generations.
Clown motifs in fashion have been around since the Fifth Dynasty of Egypt, around 2400 BC, and some of the most iconic moments include Westwood’s harlequin prints in 1989 and performers like David Bowie and Freddie Mercury wearing pieces inspired by clowns. In 2021, the trend made a resurgence, and it has only gotten stronger and weirder since. The pinnacle of this movement is clowncore, which is all about being wild and standing out.
The current clown trend may be a response to rigid minimalism or the pandemic prompting a rebirth of maximalism, but Heyer believes it is also about full-blown creative expression and maybe a bit of shock value. Even celebs are getting in on the fun, like Harry Styles in his rainbow harlequin jumpsuit at the 2023 Grammy Awards. Some fashion stylists think the impending recession is the reason behind it, as people are looking for nostalgia and joy amidst a bleak period.
Dressing like a clown is surprisingly easy, as all you need is an oversized detachable collar and one item of clothing with a pattern like polka dots, checks, or a harlequin pattern. In the end, it all boils down to laughing back at fashion in times of uncertainty or boredom.
Whoreoween: Honoring Icons in Sex Worker Costumes
Whoreoween is an innovative twist on Halloween, offering sex workers a chance to step beyond the usual sexy nurse outfits and honor legends from their industry. This event serves as an opportunity to pay tribute to current and historical figures, bringing a sense of uniqueness and recognition to a community often overshadowed by stereotypes.
Dita von Teese, a modern burlesque icon, serves as a perfect inspiration. Known for her performances, Playboy appearances, and burlesque acts, she embodies the essence of a seductress. Her costume would include a classic 40s pageboy hairstyle, a sequined corset, opera gloves, statement earrings, and bright red lipstick, preferably in MAC’s Viva Glam I or Ruby Woo shades.
Marsha P. Johnson, a pivotal figure in the Stonewall uprising, is another inspirational figure. As a gay liberation activist, trans woman, and drag queen, she advocated for gay, trans, and sex worker rights. Her costume would feature a flower crown, 70s-style glamour with a slinky dress, faux or vintage fur, sequins, and bold jewelry, capturing her spirit and role in the gay rights movement.
Dee Dee Ramone, known for his role in the Ramones, also worked as a sex worker. His costume would reflect his classic punk style with tight vintage jeans, a DIY sleeveless t-shirt, and a leather jacket.
Ms. Mona Stangley, from “The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas,” portrayed by Dolly Parton, offers a Western-inspired look. The costume could include big hair, flouncy prairie dresses, or a satin corset with a sheer robe, embodying the spirit of the 80s Texas madam.
Zorita, a groundbreaking burlesque dancer, is known for her bold performances with snakes and a famous ‘half and half’ act. Her costume would include fishnet stockings, ruffled dresses, spangly heels, and possibly a tiara or two platinum streaks in the hair.
Tilly Devine and Kate Leigh, 1920s Sydney gangsters, provide a unique option for a doubles costume. Their outfits would reflect the era’s fashion, featuring heavy coats, top hats, or beaded headscarves, emphasizing their toughness.
Josephine Baker, an American-born dancer, actress, and WWII spy, offers a glamorous choice. Her costume could include glittery earrings, a beaded satin cocktail dress, and a classic 20s hairstyle. The famous Banana Dance outfit, featuring a pearl necklace and an artificial banana skirt, also represents her iconic status.
Lycoris the Mime, from ancient Rome, presents a historical option. Her costume would include traditional white robes, perhaps with floral headpieces, reflecting the mime artists’ role during the Floralia festival.
Lastly, Bettie Page, a 1950s pinup and fetish model, offers a vintage choice. Her costume might include a leopard-print leotard, sheer dress with faux fur, or classic black satin lingerie paired with shiny black heels.
Whoreoween provides a platform for sex workers to celebrate their history and culture, offering a way to honor icons who have made significant contributions to the industry and society.
2023 Celebrity Halloween Hits and Misses
As Halloween rolls around, the unveiling of celebrity costumes becomes a highly anticipated event, reflecting both triumphs and transgressions in fashion and fandom. 2023 proved no different, with an array of high-profile personas embracing the season’s spirit through an eclectic mix of costumes.
The celebrations of 2023 remind us that Halloween is not only a display of creativity but also a reflection of our times. It’s a balancing act between homage and originality, between respect for tradition and the thrill of innovation. This year’s array of costumes, from the star-studded to the minimalistic, confirms that celebrity Halloween looks will continue to be a pop culture spectacle, for better or for worse.
Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, whose stature often overshadows any character he attempts to portray, tried to channel soccer legend David Beckham with a ‘90s-era jersey and a blonde wig. Despite the effort, the familiar face of this wrestler-turned-actor was still the main highlight.
Keke Palmer brought a touch of narrative to her costume. The actress and singer, accompanied by her son Leo as a mini mad scientist, transformed into Frankenstein’s creature. This whimsical yet heartwarming costume was well-received, as Palmer humorously credited her son for giving her “LIFE,” a play on her role as a mother and Frankenstein’s creation.
Adele, the vocal powerhouse, took to the stage in Las Vegas, embodying the dark elegance of Morticia Addams. Her rendition was both fitting for the Queen of the Night and adored by her audience, capturing the gothic essence of the beloved character with a long black wig and striking nails.
However, not all costumes were met with applause. Megan Fox and Machine Gun Kelly’s “Kill Bill” ensemble sparked controversy. While visually striking, Fox’s decision to flout SAG-AFTRA guidelines amid an actor’s strike resulted in significant backlash, with some labeling her actions as insensitive.
Meanwhile, Austin Butler and Kaia Gerber paid homage to pop art and ‘60s fashion icons Andy Warhol and Edie Sedgwick. The couple’s costume, timely for Butler’s rising fame, was both a cultural throwback and a fitting tribute to Warhol’s enduring legacy.
Florence Pugh took a different route, embracing a more casual, last-minute look as a nod to Guy Fieri. The simplicity and relatability of her costume resonated with fans who appreciate a more spontaneous approach to Halloween.
Revolutionizing Desire: The Rise of FPOV Porn
In the realm of virtual reality (VR) adult entertainment, the concept of female point-of-view (FPOV) porn has sparked interest but remains underexplored. Content creators like Lee and Erika Lust have noted that many women seek a deeper connection than traditional porn provides, craving emotional resonance alongside physical stimulation. They suggest that the industry has not fully grasped or catered to female sexual preferences, which extend beyond mere visual cues to include psychological engagement.
One of the key players, Sex Like Real (SLR), has experimented with FPOV content, responding to specific requests from their audience. However, despite attempts to innovate with scenarios like the “boyfriend experience” and narratives of female empowerment, these ventures have not always been profitable. SLR’s findings indicate that the financial returns on FPOV content don’t yet match those of conventional porn, suggesting either a mismatch in content or a niche audience.
Only a small fraction of SLR’s user base identifies as female, which might indicate limited demand. Nonetheless, industry executives like David Chapman of SLR speculate that the true number of female users is underreported due to shared devices among couples. Chapman and his colleagues believe in the importance of catering to female viewers, not only for diversity but also because VR porn can provide a safe space for exploring sexuality.
The technological barrier presented by the high cost of VR equipment also contributes to the limited reach of FPOV porn. Not everyone can afford the gear necessary to enjoy such immersive experiences, as pointed out by Lust, who acknowledges the success of her VR film “360 Degrees of Lust,” though less than her other works.
The content itself has been critiqued for not fully capturing women’s diverse tastes. A superfan of FPOV, known as Super Smash Cache, has highlighted the industry’s narrow depiction of male attractiveness and the scarcity of content that appeals to her preferences. This suggests that a wider range of male portrayals might better satisfy the diverse desires of female viewers.
Conclusively, there is a consensus that while there is an audience for female-centric VR porn, the industry needs time to adapt. More women in development and production roles could catalyze this change, fostering content that resonates more deeply with female viewers. As the technology becomes more accessible and content more diverse, FPOV porn has the potential to redefine what is desirable in adult entertainment.
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