lightwitch lite

sw V

For part II of my Halloweek series, Danica and I blatantly ripped off my favorite living artist, Courtney Brooke of lightwitch. I almost don’t want to link her here because my work is so shoddy in comparison, but there you go. I was tempted to go full plagiarist and get naked in the river, but Vermont is cold, dammit.

Photos of me by Danica. Photos of Danica, as well as all editing, by me.

dw III

dw I

sw XIV

dw VI dw II

sw VIII

sw XXVI

dw IV dw XII

sw XXVIII sw XXV  dw VII

in sheep’s clothing

danica XVIII

My friend Danica is seven inches shorter than I am, probably thirty pounds lighter, but she could take me down any day of the week. She is a tiny spitfire (and by that I mean she literally spits fire) in heels and pearls. We both revel in such contrasts. As I shot these photos of her, we talked about claiming feminine semiotics for our own ends: using lipstick, heels, and the art of the tease to broadcast power. Why leave them to those who’d oppress us?

danica yellow I

Brilliant brains in sizzling bodies. If you try to tell me one negates the other, I have nothing to say to you. (Save for my zillion screeds on the topic. But y’know.)

In other news, I really enjoyed being behind the camera for once! Danica makes a gorgeous model; I promised to take all photos of her for the rest of eternity. “Be careful what you wish for,” she said.

danica yellow II

danica yellow VII

danica yellow VI

danica yellow IX

danica yellow III

danica yellow VIII

 

young ‘uns

 

 

Because spring, because birth, because aging.

I

I swore it was just one of those in-between gigs –

a nice fiscal pick-me-up between my English B.A.

and my philosophy post-grad.

But there’s no demand for nattering Nietzscheans, it seems,

so here I remain,

making martyrs of the brats whose hall passes I deny,

and confiscating gum from the ones smarter than me.

VIII

In their skinny jeans and gangsta pants

those kids are brewing the next sexual revolution.

The boys – proto-Guevaras –

with middle fingers erected stiff,

fucking authority in the absence of any girl bold enough.

III

And the girls –

their bodies are still miraculous accidents,

still without seams dividing the end of childhood

from the beginning of self-hatred.

Each incipient breast,

not yet fraught with politics,

is blameless as a monk’s gleaming pate.

VI

 

For all the catcalls and mash notes

and terroristic exclusion campaigns:

those breasts are still pointy

and those fingers: all the boys

can actually get up.

IV

They’re playing at adulthood –

no, that’s not fair.

They are working at adulthood,

and that is more than I myself can say,

prizing education though I wasted my own

and thumbing my nose at troublemakers

while I drink my own self sane.

 

Their excuses are mine –

no, better than mine.

“Teacher dear, I am busy

pioneering this clusterfuck that is adolescence.

Please forgive me if my homework gets lost

somewhere between not-quite-wrecking-Dad’s-car

and the thrill of a first orgasm.”

VII IX

Half-grown but fully alive, they

are striving, as I

confront my own obsolescence.

Maybe that’s why they never meet my eyes:

in them they see themselves

only much more so.

V II

Words and photos by me.

coulrophobes’ worst nightmare

I

III

VIII

Clockwork children never sleep. We can afford patience, though: fear has no expiration date. Changing seasons bring us from the woodwork, from the corners, from all the places you forgot to check.

Think spring can’t spook you?

X

Think again.

VII

VI

V

Packed away again. Wait ’til next the winds change.

II

decadent decades

50s I

Josh and I turned ourselves up to 11 for Green Mountain Cabaret’s ’50s-themed show last Saturday. I did my usual pinup thing. Nothing too new to see here, except this godforsaken dress I picked up at Junktiques for EIGHT DOLLARS. One would assume Hell Bunny or ModCloth. Nope, just my neighborhood junk shop. God I love Junktiques. Its owner also operates a pay-what-you-can cafeteria called Psychedelicatessen, which I suspect is secretly some kind of speakeasy-cum-opium-den. I really enjoy Burlington.

50s II

Josh, little shit that he is, insisted that “the century was never specified!” We ended up as “1950s meets 1850s”. I love these shots of us – not least because we both really, truly look like ourselves. The versions that live in our heads and occasionally get realized in the real world. Possibly my favorite thing about Josh is his understanding of that head-Skye. He knows who I want to be, and every day he helps me be her.

I’ll take the opportunity to mention that yesterday was our first anniversary, which makes today our year-and-a-day. Today is far worthier of celebration, fae that we are.

50s III

All photos by Zinfandel Photography, official photographer for Green Mountain Cabaret.

50s IV

 

50s V

not your manic pixie

I

V

My friend Bee calls it “millennial androphilia”. You might know it by that name, or by another, or by the subtle understanding that you are probably not taken seriously. It’s in every article about how boys really want “guys’ girls” and how we should leave heavy makeup to the high-drama whores. Have you ever noticed how often “natural” is code for “masculine”? “She’s so natural; she’s so down-to-earth, she’s not fake.” As though femininity were an artifice, something we peel back to find the “true” (i.e. masculine) state of being underneath. As though it can only ever be a performance – never an identity.

VI

Let’s impale those old canards. Twist the knife and let them bleed out. Because I’m sick of having my essence smirked at before I even open my mouth. I don’t perform femininity to be ironic or because I don’t know any better. I’m not waiting  for some brocialist to liberate me from my own choices. Equating femininity with weakness is nothing new. It’s not progressive.

Zooey Deschanel summed it up. “I want to be a fucking feminist and wear a fucking Peter Pan collar.”

III

A woman being sexy doesn’t make women part of ‘the sex class’; refusing to see a woman as a powerful individual because she’s sexy absolutely does.  It says that her sexiness speaks louder than her actual voice, that who she is sexually tells you everything you need to know about who she is as a person.” I will forever repost this, because it will never not be true. If you claim to know my mind better than I because I am twee, because I wear pink, because I am sometimes naked, then you are no better than those you claim to protect me from. 

II

IV

VIII

 

This is my fed-up face. But I’m also pleased because I got this dress for $12 at BSJ, and it turned out to be the creation of a very small Toronto clothier that folded last year. They only ever sold 158 dresses, and I own one of those 158.

Dress & Parasol: Battery Street Jeans Cardigan: Shalom Shuk Tights, Shoes, & Hat: Gifted Necklace: Old Gold

VII

 

 

 

vengeance: the repinkening

pink IX

pink III

pink X

I feel more like me than I have in months. Pink is my natural hair color. I feel like a rockabilly Cruella de Bright.

pink XI

I just love pulling a dress from a pile or rack and seeing that good ol’ “ILGWU” stamp on it. The International Ladies’ Garment Workers’ Union operated from 1900 to 1995. Their signature instantly adds to a garment’s appeal. It’s a clear indication of history – see Kristina’s post on dating ILGWU labels. The pink confection above features a gray-blue label, making it ~50 years old. I also feel honored to wear something made to last, under ethical conditions, by women sneering at convention and earning their own living. That, and it’s pink. Everything I’d like my style ethos to embody.

I want clothes made with pride and worn with pride. Is that so much to ask?

pink VII

pink XII

pink XIV

Dress: Battery Street Jeans Socks, Shoes, & Belt: Gifted Scarf: Junktiques Brooch: Savers

pink XV

 

la fae verte

fae I

tethered in the balance of sea and sky

of awake and merely alive

quietly gestate your world.

fae II fae III

pare down elysium and tartaros:

breathe your sooty asphodel

into a humble human whole.

fae V fae VI

traverse creation like an insect,

carrying discernment in the pads of

your feet

fae VIII fae X

and map a tiny galaxy

fae XIII fae XIV

beneath the skin of every world.

fae IX

pastiche of primness

suit X

The power to carve your own niche might not feel like much, but it’s so damn integral. To muddy the lines and mingle with every station feels as basic as survival. This is why I’m a fashion blogger. This is why I couldn’t live in this skin without flooding my tiny world with color and texture. I can dress my way into anything. I can play up or down any quirk that I choose. Lena Dunham said in this month’s Glamour that using her body as a prop in her art gives it worth. As vacuous as I usually find Lena Dunham, I thought that particular line said everything I’ve wanted to say about fashion and modeling and then some. Use what you’re given to become anything you want. Be an androgynous glam rocker or a sideshow queen. Be.

suit VIII

 

suit VII

And in this suit, I’m my Advanced Style self 20 years too soon. I’m my old crackhead-society-dame standby. I’m a collegiate Miss Frizzle. I like making people dizzy, (usually) metaphorically speaking. This suit is as prim as it gets, but those tights are pure unadulterated middle-school chintz. I wore this outfit to the library, where I browsed the horror section and selected two books about sociopathy. Is it too self-indulgent that I really like not being pinned down? I am a pagan horror enthusiast in a vintage suit, no more or less one than the others. And I want to be all of me.

suit II

 

suit IX

 

suit V

Suit & Brooch: Battery Street Jeans Blouse: Dirt Chic Socks, Shoes, & Hat: Gifted Tights: Clothing swap

suit XII

suit XI

 

suit XIII