dressember, skye’s way

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I wear dresses 364 days of the day, so of course I’m wearing pants on the first day of a month dedicated to dresses. I’m nothing if not an obnoxious contrarienne.

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Seriously, though – today is the first day of Dressember, wherein participants wear dresses for a month to raise money for the International Justice Mission. A few of my blogger friends are really committed to this, and that’s great! I even did it myself last year. But this year I will be abstaining, and here’s why.

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The International Justice Mission stands against “the commercial sexual exploitation of children, forced labor slavery, illegal detention, police brutality, and illegal land seizure”.  I have nothing but respect for these goals, and police brutality is especially topical. If you consider donating to IJM, however, you should know that their anti-trafficking efforts often leave consensual sex workers caught in the crossfire. I do not doubt their good intentions, but they come from a perspective that sees sex work very differently than I do and too often conceptualizes all sex workers as victims.

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I do not begrudge anyone’s participation in Dressember. No charity is perfect, and everyone weighs their values differently. If ending trafficking, in the aggregate, is of higher priority to you than the protection of sex workers, that is okay. We all triage our activism. From my perspective, however, it’s not worth it.

That’s why this year I will be collecting funds for the International Union of Sex Workers. I’ll have a gofundme page up within a few days; please consider donating. No matter your moral position on sex work, I think we can all agree that the women and men engaged in it deserve their agency respected and equal protection under the law.

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If you wish to donate to Dressember, please direct your funds to my fellow blogger Kristina’s campaign. I plan to do so myself as well. I do believe that the IJM, on the whole, does important work. But it’s vital that we balance it out with attention to the populations they neglect.

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inner child stirred awake

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For the past few winters, I’ve been grasping at the “effortlessly toasty” aesthetic, rife with peacoats and Christmas choirs and suspiciously absent the slightest hint of a runny nose. You know what I mean. Let’s pretend our hems never drag and our gloves never soak through, even in the tyranny of a Vermont winter. More importantly, let’s not pretend we don’t curate our lives. I’ve been hearing a lot about how presenting only the bits you choose to share is somehow disingenuous, how the needy public is somehow owed the admission of private pains and flaws. A lot of bloggers seem to wonder if they’re “faking” by only displaying their most polished selves, by not sharing unflattering outtakes and two-a.m. pajama-clad selfies. If that’s faking, then I’d rather not be real. Who decided that anyone gets to ask for more than what I’m willing to give you? Keeping part of my life for myself alone preserves my sanity.

You’ll get some pretty pictures today, of course, but that little screed has been on my mind for a good while now. Yes, what I share here is real, but it’s augmented. It has to be – what art is any good 100% raw? I’m honored to have such a platform for my  work, I really am. But at the end of the day, I don’t think any creator can afford not to distinguish between spectators and friends.

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I’m not as unfriendly as I sound, I swear. Really, it just comes down to one more reason why I love clothes so much. I get to display exactly what, and how much of it, I want. I get to speak clearly without opening a vein.

And today I’m speaking “inner child snowed awake”.

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I’m really enjoying feeling like an overly starched storybook schoolgirl. Cliche can be a lot of fun to mine.

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Coat: Josh’s Dress & Sweater: Classy Closet Belt: Downtown Threads Boots: Battery Street Jeans Hat: Old Gold Tights: Gifted

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scraps of warmer days

New items in the shop! As usual, click each image to visit its shop listing.

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etsy blue I

etsy florals I

I mentioned this in the last post, but I’ve got a new page for y’all to subscribe to: my modeling persona, Gloria Mundi. I’m trying to reinvent myself as an explicitly pagan model. I’m still interested in other genres too, of course (who could ever turn down a pinup shoot?), but I’d like to start from a pagan place and occasionally branch out. Gone are my days of taking every job I was offered. I think I have enough experience now to be more selective. I’ve started actually curating my ModelMayhem page, rather than posting shots from every single shoot. I’ve always believe that modeling is an art, and a respectable one, and I ought to start presenting it that way.

I leave you with two Dressember ootds!

dressember sweater I

dressember black I

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New in my Etsy shop. Click on the photos to visit the listings.

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suit jacket I

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In other blog news…

  • This week, I’ll be sponsoring a giveaway with Marlen of Messages on a Napkin. One lucky reader, after liking my shop on Facebook and commenting with their favorite garment, will receive a $25 gift card to Dressed in the Dark Vintage. I’ll promote it on Facebook when it’s finalized, of course, but keep your eyes peeled anyway. I also bought a month of ad space on Marlen’s blog! I’m five down on the right.
  • I received my first creepy doll contest submission! It sets the bar pretty damn high, but there’s still plenty of time to enter. Find out how here.
  • As of today, I am officially participating in Dressember. If I can wear dresses for a month (is that even a question?), volunteers will pledge to donate to the International Justice Mission’s campaign against human trafficking. I’ll be documenting my dresses both on the blog and on Facebook. Visit my profile here, and please consider donating if you can spare a little.