Sites like Pinterest and Polyvore mostly bore me because pretty things bore me. Scary things? Gory things? Things so gloriously beauteous they’re painful to behold? Great! Sign me up. But ‘cute’ and ‘pretty’ are often synonyms for ‘safe’ and ‘inoffensive’, and after scrolling through pages of babies or puppies or cupcakes trying to find something of interest, everything blurs into a dull pastel smear and I just can’t pay attention. Polyvore’s even duller because the focus is fashion, wearable objects, and mostly ones from established designers. They’ve tricked the consumer into doing the heavy lifting of advertising, for nothing more than the possibility of ‘likes’ and ‘shares’ that just further advertise. I’m sure it’s lots of fun rearranging outfits; it’s the modern paper doll, but the only thing more boring than puppies is fashion, unless you’re reaching for Leigh Bowery levels of wearable art.
AND SO IT IS! A very small segment of Polyvore does indeed seem less interested in Kate Spade bags and cool points and far more interested in messing with the very concept of fashion as passive consumer purchase. Rebecca Jane Stokes’ ‘Get This Look’ series for The Hairpin is the ne plus ultra, with concepts outside the realm of ‘traditional’ inspiration which still lend themselves to some amazing outfits (the Hamburglar and Swans are two favorites).
Amazing, not just ‘pretty’.
Then there’s sets like this Itchy and Scratchy ‘outfit’, capturing inspiration without a single wearable item and completely circumventing Polyvore’s intended use:
…Or this collage of ‘babies’:
User Frank Ocean’s turned arbitration of taste via outfit into personal confession with their sets:
Then there’s turning away from fashion as constant reinvention of self and embracing it as embodiment of beloved personality. Sort of similar to how fans of anime draw any/every character/historical figure/inanimate object into anime style, but less irritating. And how could you stay mad at these?
(That they made a set for both Joel and Mike made my week.)
YESSSSSSSS. The master….will be pleased.