SO this weekend I designed, styled and directed a anti-fashion Kinderwhore photoset for my final magazine journalism project. As you do.
Drawing on my April obsession with blossom, pinafores and a little-girl-gone-wrong-in-the-head aesthetic, I popped together a couple of mood boards to help me formulate a solid concept.
(images c/o: Lyricsfreak, krasivyi-toska, cottingleyconnect, thepulpgirls, polyvore, scrapbookmax, fated to be hated, amongst animals)
(images c/o: bravotv, imgfave, style rookie, polyvore, fastfilm, afterellen, trendhunter, the idle woman)
I lusted after pastel hair, flimsy dresses, Courtney Love, witchy bitchface girl gangs, gigantic 80's bouffants, camaraderie, the Cottingley fairies and Matthew Bourne's Sleeping Beauty. The mental jumble of all the above resulted in the following designs. Please don't judge too harshly!
It was Oli's idea to co-ordinate the patterns. I was originally gearing up for a festivally, glitter-encrusted vibe before he stepped in and pointed out the picture of the three ethereal girls in the corner of moodboard one. A caffiene-fuelled brainstorm and a scrawly spider diagram led to the streamlining and refinement of the first idea.
As I'm impoverished student (have I mentioned that before? Oh, wait...) and also wanted to take a great flying leap away from anything that remotely resembles glamour, I decided to avoid my fantastic local fabric shop Butterfly and instead pootled down to the PDSA to pick up some second-hand floral bedlinen. Can you see where this is going yet?
^That there is the first dress I put together by deconstructing and rejigging a couple of pillowcases. I designed it for my first model Saz, and purposely created a loose trapeze silhouette to hang dramatically off her slight frame. The ruffles were an afterthought - the dress was in need of a bit of extra oomph so I hand-gathered the leftover trim from the cases and popped it on the hem.
Heledd's design was intended to be a skater dress with a Peter Pan collar and ruffled waistbelt, but on receiving her measurements (that lady is dinky) I overhauled yet another idea and charged on down the pinafore path. I'm really glad I did, as the figure-hugging waistband, flouncy circle skirt and slouchy bib hung perfectly off her bird-like and nonchalantly shrugged shoulders. Oversized red buttons complemented the dainty crimson rose print perfectly.
I left the Lauren's dress to the last minute (DOYYY), but it worked out for the best as it meant that Mother Dearest popped over for the day to help me put the pieces I'd already cut together. 11am to 5pm was a whirlwind of juddering sewing machine, steaming irons and wild-eyed dress fittings, so sadly we didn't get any pictures of us in action. I stuck to my tried-and-tested circle skirt/simple darted bodice formula which I knew would flatter L's hourglass figure perfectly, and cut a deep V on the back of the bodice to show off her tattoo. I then forced Saz to join our little team and had her hand-stitching oversized ruffles to safety-pin 3 inches above the hem.
I asked the girls to rough up their doll pink blush and pillarbox red lipstick with heavily-kohled harlot eyes. Heledd and Saz flipped their uber-backcombed hair to the side to expose their undercuts, and Lauren swept her dark locks into a dishevelled beehive and perched a gigantic bow on top. Chunky gothic jewelry, messed-up tights and chunky clunky DM's balanced the delicate frocks and grounded an otherwise whimsical, flyaway affair.
Images courtesy of the ridiculously talented Jack Hunter. He's my brother, dontcha know.
Mega FANKS to Mother Dearest, Oli, Saz, Lauren and Heledd for yr hard work and patience.
Betti Baudelaire xxx