Today I’ve been introducing the Internet to a side of me that few online have seen.
Kalinara may be the one in pink, Soyo may be the one who’s small and cute, but I’m the fashion maven.
Oh, I shop very cheaply. I care nothing for designer clothing. I couldn’t give two shits about what’s “in style” at any given season. I do however, know the tricks of the trade. I know how to dress to full effect. I know how to make my breasts look a cup larger or a cup smaller without stuffing. I know how to hide the little fat deposit in my belly. I can make my legs look longer and my torso shorter, or vice versa. I can make my butt disappear, or appear twice as large. I can look taller and shorter at will. I am not a Martian, I just know what to wear.
And I know why Arisia’s new costume is a bad idea.
I’ve tried to explain this to a lot of people today (so many that I have made today into an informal Arisia Day!). I blogged about it on Blog@Newsarama, and had to give a fashion lesson there. Just to be safe, I blogged on Written World that same fashion lesson, in case my regular readers needed it. I started a thread on Comic-Bloc about it a few days ago, but didn’t check back until today. Guess what, they needed it there too!
So, because I’ve had to explain it to so many people, here it is one more time (And so I can say I blogged this across three blogs today):
1) Dark colors make bodies look smaller. Light colors make bodies look bigger.
2) A tight outfit, when it’s well-fit enough that no flesh hangs over, will make bodies look smaller.
3) Just as a flared skirt makes your butt look bigger, a straight skirt makes your butt look smaller.
4) Necklines can be used to great effect on your bustline. A V-cut makes your breasts look larger. A square or round cut makes your breasts look smaller.
5) Here’s the complicated one. A Backless top serves to draw attention to the front. I’m not sure exactly how it does this, but it does.
Any one of the above tricks gives a subtle impression, and hides a feature that you may feel a slight bit self-conscious about.
If you feel a need to use a number of them, in conjunction, and it has nothing to do with your chosen profession — you probably should look into self-esteem building measures. (As an aside: everyone has body issues, but (and here I digress into real-world things) they’re better off confronted on an emotional level than on a physical level.)
Just about all of the above tricks used together are major overkill.
I’ve rarely seen an adult woman use all of the above. I have, however, seen teenaged girls use the above tricks because they feel larger breasts and smaller butts will make them look older. Those same teenaged girls tend to dress in as little clothing as they can get away with, because that also makes them feel as though they look older.
Arisia’s costume uses all of the above tricks to make her breasts seem as large as possible, and her butt unnoticable. It makes her seem like a person who feels her breasts are too small and her ass is too big. And her costume history implies that the artists also believe that less clothing is more mature.
That costume to me is still filed under “stuff a teenaged girl thinks adult women wear.” Arisia’s entire character arc is about maturity. This is not good. Because as much as Geoff Johns might work to retcon away the old story, the next writer could very well be of the “I prefer Arisia as a teenager” camp and undo it. That means the stigma of the Hal-Arisia relationship is back in full force. An immature outfit can only help that to happen. The last thing that needs to be near Arisia is teenaged girl logic.
On the bright side, maybe they’ll turn her over to GLC and Patrick Gleason can do something with this dressing disaster. He did manage to make a to-the-navel cleavage cut on Dr Natu seem tasteful and respectable.