Deformed ribs, fainting rooms and OMGDRAMAZ – why should ladies have all the fun? Men wear corsets too! Male corsetry was first popularized in Regency England by Beau Brummell, the original dandy – a man who polished his boots with champagne. Here he is in his pre-insane-from-syphilis days, sporting abs of whalebone. “Sixpack? Don’t need one.”
There’s been a spectacular revival of dandy style in fashion magazines and on the runway, but it’s not until now that I’ve seen a strong new take with a darker tone. Photographer Peter Ashworth (previously mentioned here) recently collaborated with designer Stefán Orschel-Read (who also models in the shoot) to create Orschel-Read’s A/W fashion lookbook, “Mourning for Orlando” – a series that, at various turns, perfectly marries dandy and deathrock. My favorite images are of the streamlined corset/jacket combo; I imagine Mr. Pearl would approve! The collection includes a wider array of unusual pairings, including geisha, punk, Baroque, and, amazingly, the 70’s leisure suit. How do they all combine? See for yourself.