I’ve recently been attending perhaps too many fetish nights. It’s a real commitment, especially forking out for new outfits or travel when you’re doing it free. At a club in the country a few weeks back I was accosted by scene stalwart who informed me that I was outrageous for coming in black ‘fabric’ trousers. My excuse note goes to him and this blog: ‘Dear Sir, My catsuit is up the spout right now and its too hot to wear it anyway. My rubber strides are ripped in a secret place. I haven’t got round to maintenance.’
I was wearing a black rubber t-shirt and long boots with the trousers rolled up – a goth Captain Kirk look, if you must. But this was not enough. Nor could I hold the moral high ground and point out twenty people who were also not in full fetish regalia. I could even name names, scene regulars with their own websites. Zippy goth combats anyone? (I got thrown out TG dressed like that once).
Added to this confusion was the fact that it was a theme night and for a lot of outfits, actual fetish or the flavour of BDSM, was in camouflage.
Do people have a pixie fetish? I’m not convinced. I’m not defending my wrong trousers, but lets discuss this for a bit, because I believe it reflects the whole scene at the moment. This is an ongoing debate on Planet Perve, so your comments below are highly valued. For now my thoughts continue…
Lets assume that real scenesters don’t need to prove they are lifestylers. Some hardcore fetishist’s style choices I know include fabric shirts, trousers and accessories. Tight, black, themed or sensual they enhance a look, say for that of a horseback-rider wearing jodphurs. Or a military commander sporting pressed, dress uniform. I’ve generally not seen a strict dress code enforced too heavily on these people. But this the borderland where kink becomes fancy dress and the need for latex, PVC and leather is dramatically reduced.
Then we might have staffers. Bar-workers, attendants, security or general gofers. That’s another twenty people right there not in strict dress code. And I’m not being pedantic or defensive. I agree that as a scene representative or ambassador I should be in the right attire. But would it not be a nice surprise to see venue staff vaguely in the spirit of the night – perhaps rubber T’s with the night or club logo? Maybe a drinks company wants to sponsor that? Wouldn’t it be good if doorstaff had a background in BDSM life, knew the coup – there must be some dominating souls among them. Of course this bespeaks of perfect worlds and I guess that’s a reckless ask in the vein of say, Mein Kampf.
But lets reflect on this theme night business. I mentioned the pervy pixie above. Pointy ears, painted face. Are they a perve or purely gaining access to a pseudo-orgy? A club night where ‘girls get their tits out’? Am I being pixist?
Say people come dressed as the theme, call it ‘Vicars and Tarts’. Now how many of those attendees are coming in fetish gear? I mean the exact combo of theme and fetish, bearing in mind the club night’s name infers its either BDSM, alternative, latexual or general fetish. This would ask then for bondage vicars, rubber nuns, and a veritable Rio carnival of cross-dressing.
How do the regular clubbers feel that there are ‘vicars and tarts’ that you would see down the local pub fancy-dress party when the aforesaid prescription is for perves, pervery and celebration of perversion. Especially when this begets a hinterland of non-costume where musclebound mateys preen about in their Speedoes looking for a quick resolution to the nagging turmoil in their ball-sack. That’s not to say the night isn’t good fun or pervy things don’t happen for all. It just means that the scene is bulging at the seams and could do with specializing. Note I didn’t say segregating, labeling or dividing.
To survive the immense same-date competition between fetish clubs, especially in London, and especially in high Summer, every month new ideas need to be thought of – and quick. I believe in promoting the great work and passion of clubs and related fetishists giving their time. The late-night/early morning workload involved is fantastic and these comments are in no way a chip at these, in many personal cases, life-changing events.
But its because these are life-changing events that I summon up the audacity to request that the whole strict dress code needs to be reassessed and nights need to look at being more defined. And I also believe, changing facilities for men, women and the inbetween need to properly facilitated before anyone enforces a strict dress code. Because to not have proper changing rooms tells the fetishists they have to make do or deal with lavatories. And putting on a catsuit in cubicle is neither easy nor a spur for the glamour chase. I keep losing my talc in the toilet bowl.