Suit Up: The Lingerie Life with That Je Ne Sais Quoi….

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This is one of my more intimate posts, Blog Reader, a look at the life of a lingerie blogger, with the help of my close friend Lindsay of That Je Ne Sais Quoi.  I consider myself to be a fashion blogger first and foremost, but my passion for lingerie and boudoir accessories creeps into the blog each week.  Since I have been lucky to work with some fantastic lingerie brands whom I love to promote because they are close to my own personal style aesthetic, I take a closer step to being a ‘lingerie blogger’ each day of writing.

In this feature, I tackle the issue of what it is to be a ‘lingerie blogger’ and all that goes with it, with a little q & a that Lindsay and I decided to pose to each other for careful thought.  I’d be very interested in your views about this post, Blog Reader, and how you find the way we show and talk about lingerie.

From Sarah, for Lindsay:

Q: What do you most like about being a lingerie blogger? Are there any parts of the role that you don’t like? Or that you find difficult?

A: I love that I started my blog during a time that was really exciting for lingerie. In 2011, innerwear as outerwear started to take over the runways and leather became an even stronger trend. Blogging about lingerie is unique because there aren’t too many voices in that world right now. That being said, it’s a double-edged sword. I have a day job I like very much, and I need to position my blog in a way that doesn’t interfere with that. Lots of lingerie bloggers have remained anonymous, so they have the freedom to post pictures of themselves actually wearing the lingerie. At times, I’m jealous of that, but most often I’m proud that I can own my blog. It’s definitely become an extension of who I am.

Q: You often show yourself in various pieces of lingerie and loungewear on your blog. Usually these pieces are very intimate, how is it for you to be photographed in this way and to present the images on your blog? 

A: The images on my blog look intimate, but I have actually never posted anything that reveals more than a modern bathing suit. And who doesn’t have photos of themselves on the Internet in a bathing suit? I think the way Lydia and I shoot feels intimate because most of my looks are shot indoors, but the bottom line is that they’re actually not all that revealing.

I also have a great relationship with Lydia, my photographer. I trust her and truly believe in her talents.

Q: When people hear the word ‘ lingerie blogger ‘ what do you imagine they think…

A: I’m sure they think all kinds of things. It’s funny – the topics I blog about, mainly lingerie, leather and aesthetic bondage – are considered taboo by most of society. People think it’s unprofessional or uncouth to blog about these things, but when I tell them about the blog in person they’re immediately fascinated. Swift judgment (especially Internet-based) is an interesting quirk of humanity, I think.Also, some people assume I must be DTF because I blog about lingerie, but it’s not like that. I live my life in lingerie, I have an extensive boudoir, and yes, I’m fascinated by bondage, harnesses and leather, but am very loyal to my partner. I don’t understand why promiscuity and a love of lingerie have to go hand in hand. Because of this, I have to be very careful about my image. There are collaborations I will do and ones I won’t do: I’m prohibitively picky and quite a perfectionist. I’d rather take a long time and do something I’m proud of than churn out posts for the sake of posting.Having the blog certainly keeps life interesting. I think it would be a big mistake not to follow my passion for fear of judgment – who wants regrets based around the approval of others? That’s where my only qualm comes from. I think it’s unfortunate how some people are narrow-minded enough to form a negative judgment based solely our societal taboo of lingerie and bodies. On the flip side, and to end on a good note, there are so many wonderful people I’ve met through blogging (including you, Sarah!) who I am  grateful to have in my life. It’s through shared interests, passions and talent that we can make the world more beautiful.

Lindsay’s questions for Sarah:

Q: When did you buy your first harness, and what prompted your interest in them?

A: I bought my first harness from Lascivious, the Aiko harness, about three years ago. I was wearing a lot of black and I was interested in find ways to make a little black dress more interesting, with strong and feminine impact, yet I hated jewellery and wasn’t at all sure what to do.  I found the Aiko harness on the Lascivious website and thought it could be a wonderful piece for both wearing under and over dresses, shirts and the like. I was very much into the aesthetic of leather and strappy things – leather wrap bracelets and strappy shoes – and this harness combined all my favourite things. I wore it all the time and just after that I purchased a leather harness from Fleet Ilya. I now own several, because I think they are a wonderful way to add strength to an outfit; also that dichotomy between feminine and strength is an interesting thing to convey style-wise.

Q: You’ve had some beautiful Instagram posts lately in lingerie – this seems to be the direction lingerie bloggers are going. Do you think we as lingerie bloggers need to show skin to be successful?

A: I do not think that to be a successful lingerie blogger that you need to show skin.  I am of the opinion that the power of the imagination is far sexier than seeing everything raw in the flesh and I want my own lingerie posts to show this. Social media sharing has made it widespread to show near-naked mirror selfies and the like. As women I do feel a responsibility not to add to the sexual objectification of females.  Having said that, on a practical level there is an issue of how lingerie is made to fit the body and can be shown well on the blog and social media. I always pick editorial images over product shots of collections I write about for this reason – lingerie worn is lingerie that is alive and inspires.  I am also of the opinion, like you, that lingerie and the body is a very taboo subject still and I want to challenge that. Good foundations help us feel and to look good and say a lot about our personalities.  I write my lingerie features to empower women to choose unique pieces that reflect their personalities.  But again, I do not wish to show anything more than what a bikini or bathing suit might show.  And not in any way in sexual positions. I want to have fun with lingerie too, and I hope my images reflect that.

Q: Finally, I will pose one of the questions you asked me back to you: what are your favorite and least favorite parts of being a lingerie blogger, and what’s your favorite StyleOnTheCouch post to date?

A: Because so many lingerie brands are small and / or niche brands, I love how often you communicate directly with the designer rather than a PR agency to know more about different designs or collections. Like you I’ve made so many friends in this area, more so than in the area of fashion with StyleOnTheCouch for sure.  That’s a huge bonus of being a lingerie blogger.  My least favourite part? Probably the ongoing battle between how to reconcile this with my professional career because of taboo and judgement.  That and needing a wardrobe for lingerie almost as big as my other clothing :)

In this post: Lindsay is wearing: Hella Block Bodysuit from Playful Promises.  I’m wearing: Black Jack Bodysuit from Clare Bare.  Tune in next week to see our top picks for bodysuits this fall / winter!

Photos by the always amazing Lydia Hudgens.

Friday Lingerie Lust: Lascivious AW13

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Lascivious FW13 LingerieBack to the regular schedule of Friday Lingerie Lust, Blog Reader.  First up, a brand close to my heart and hence never too far from this Friday page: the incredible Lascivious.  For AW13 they collaborated with photographer Szymon Brodziak, whose images are often compared with Helmut Newton, for a sultry campaign filled with fantasy and desire. The new lines:

Jade: sensual cut-outs and a combination of contemporary mesh and decadent silk in a seductive jade colour-way with contrast copper components. Modern and effortlessly sexy.

Mai: a beautiful, feminine range that features a perfect pairing of nude fabric overlain with softly textured black tulle, given a modern edge with leatherette detailing and contrast copper components.

Isa: my favourite from the collection, a bodysuit made with a combination of black, sparkle mesh and faux leather, also available with dramatic crystal embellishment. Perfect to combine with a harness or jewellery piece as outerwear or for the bedroom.

Whilst Lascivious create new and unique collections season after season, they continue to sell their classics year round which includes a lovely luxury basics range.  For more information on Lascivious click HERE. To shop the dark fantasies created by Brodziak, click HERE. You can also purchase at Journelle, Faire Frou Frou and Teddys for Bettys.

Friday Lingerie Lust: Karolina Laskowska

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Karolina Laskowska Lingerie StyleOnTheCouchI get very excited when lingerie-loving friends let me know about their new finds! My friend and fellow blogger Lindsay, who you may recognise from her guest posts before on StyleOnTheCouch, told me about Karolina Laskowska earlier this year.  A wonderful synergy between fashion and lingerie, Laskowska told me this about her brand:

“I adore blending concepts of eroticism, luxury and lingerie as outerwear.  Most of my pieces can add an edge to outerwear, whether worn on top of a vest top or visible under a sheer blouse.  They’re equally as stylish but a lot more naughty in the bedroom!  I adore bespoke work too – designing one-off pieces for individual customers, using the finest French couture laces and silks. I’d like to introduce those sorts of materials and more colour into my ‘ready-to-wear’ line and I’m planning to develop that this Summer”

What I particularly admire about Laskowska’s designs are the way in which they blend elements of the fetish with feminine accents and materials.  For example, the soft ribbon on the Wiktoria harness and the ivory lace trim on the Kaja leather cuffs.

Laskowska’s collection includes a playsuit and accessories (cuffs and garters). You can view more images and read more about the brand HERE.

Photo credits:  Top image, photography – Steve Kraitt, model – Nathalie Hers. Second image, left: photography – Catherine Day, model – Vicki Blatchley. Third, photography – MSD productions, modelling & styling – Sundal Roy. Final image: photography – Nadia King, model – Alivya Free, styling – Tess Daly.