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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).

GTL - Swan

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:

itchy and scratchy


…Or this collage of ‘babies’:

All Babies Look Alike


User Frank Ocean’s turned arbitration of taste via outfit into personal confession with their sets:

sold my house todai ? ? ?


anger fucking management



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?

Untitled #653


Untitled #660


FCDC 12/50- Joel Robinson


FCDC 4/50- Mike Nelson

(That they made a set for both Joel and Mike made my week.)

Riff On This: The TORGO Collection

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This weekend I had the luxury of childhood regression. I sat around my parents’ house, did nothing, and after Dad finished perusing the paper read the Sunday comics. Even as a child I understood newspaper comics were ‘funny’, not funny. Indicators of humor were present – bright colors, giant rounded lettering, grotesque expressions- but nothing close to a laugh was expected, save for a strangled gasp at the latest dark depth Funky Winkerbean sank to.
Despite some recent turnover to new ‘edgy’ strips, newspaper comics remain exactly the same – generally terrible drawing styles in the service of stale setups and punchlines. Are people with good ideas and the ability to coherently represent things just not getting through to newspapers? Does the strip-a-day format with larger Sunday showcase just not appeal to those who might actually raise the bar a bit?

Glancing about this grim, gaudy landscape I was shocked to find a ‘Sally Forth’ that caught my attention. More genial conversation than joke, the entire strip is dedicated to praising ‘Mystery Science Theater 3000′. The entire strip. Explaining what the show is, what it did, and why in a nutshell it is awesome. Again, no punchline, but its appearance was more than welcome. The thought of a younger generation not knowing or enjoying MST3K is grimmer than ‘Funky Winkerbean’ any day of the week.

We now return you to the regularly scheduled anachronistic WTF that is the other half of Sunday comics:

Why does Prince Valiant look like ”V For Vendetta’ starring Vincent Price’? Is that a woman in spring-hunting-Santa drag? WHY IS GAWAIN SMILING LIKE THAT?!

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A friend once told me the better a band was, the more difficult it became for him to enjoy the show. As this is completely inverse to the norm I asked why. He said if a band was really good, he’d get so inspired he’d actually get antsy standing there listening when all he wanted was to run off and make awesome music.

I thought this was a bit much until I came across this:


Ghhh! Agggh! Brain…seizing up with…equal parts admiration and rage…why am I not making something this awesome RIGHT NOW?!

The Sampler of Fate comes from the talented hands of Steotch, on whose site there are many more equally awesome/rage/inspiring samplers. You bet your ass I’ve got my Aida fabric out and needle sharpened.

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