Monday, September 8, 2014
Principles of Epic Costuming: Chapter 6
Let me address a few things. People always ask me "where would I wear this?" at festivals, and I always try my hardest to be civil and keep the sarcasm out of my answer. I would like to state that most of us have been raised in a society that ultimately wants us to...uh...sit down and shut up. What does school teach you? Take the tests the same way as everyone else, learn at the same rate and the same speed with the same expectations, and if you don't, we'll give you a naughty grade and help you to define who you are and how you are limited!!! The fact is, no one can define you and limit you except for yourself.
And yet, I have grown adults, women who are successful, smart, passionate, and superb, and yet they are still timidly asking ME "But, where would I wear this?" about the corsets. Some of you may say, "What the crap, Michelle, they are just asking a valid question. They don't want to get something that they won't wear." I know that occasionally, the women are just genuinely wondering how much use they'll get out of the corset, but I feel that 90% of the time, the REAL question is, "What if people don't accept me in this corset? What if people judge me for wearing this celebration of my body shape? What will people say? What will they say behind my back? Who am I to be alluring and attractive?"
It's so sad to me when I see this hesitation...this faltering, when the woman CLEARLY was enamored of herself initially when she tried on the corset. Most of my customers look into the mirror, see a woman they love and cherish and want to be, but then the habit of second-guessing comes in. No, ladies! No!!! Take that pride in yourself and let it transform you!! I'm not saying, "buy the damn corset", I'm saying, "Don't stop yourself mid-progress and start with the self-flagellation." I just want women to take the gift of loving themselves from my company, and let it be a "gift that keeps on giving".
I heard a quote that I really liked. It went something like "There are two things that mess us up. Our parents and High School." *said tongue-in-cheek* I seriously think that high school trains our brains to be so terrified of what "the other people" might think that we split ourselves in half, and go on living the half of ourself that is reserved, scared, apathetic, and caged. We spend our lives trying to please people that we don't care about and that we might not even like. That sounds harsh, but I'm afraid it has some truth to it.
Wearing your costume out in public helps other people to confront their own fears and self-limitations. It allows others who see you to articulate things about themselves to their own brains. If they're offended, it gives them information about their experiences in life and their own prejudices. If they're exhilarated by the vision of you, it allows them to have hope that perhaps they might have more courage themselves. Once again, you are giving people a gift. When I am in Seattle and I see a handsome man striding proudly down the sidewalk in a kilt and a button-up shirt, I feel brightness, clarity, and hope for humanity. He gave me a gift. Now, go out and give to others!!