Monday, August 29, 2011

Customer Highlight: Annie Nozawa

Annie is her Dark Garden black leather Dollymop overbust corset.
Photo by Annie Nozawa


Annie Nozawa works in marketing.
web page: vivisaqueen.blogspot.com (a blog about my dog Vivienne)

1. What is you earliest corset memory?
I think I was in my early teens, cruising around on the interwebs when I somehow stumbled upon a website about fetish and fashion. Within this site was an excerpt from an interview with Mr. Pearl, famed corset-maker, where he talked about how "to be caned is to know the great pleasure of correction" and, of course, waist training. I was fascinated. I didn't realize one could eventually train one's waist into a more attractive, slimmer size. So followed my secret obsession.

2. Describe the first corset you ever wore.
Technically, the first corset I ever wore wasn't really a corset -- nor was the first "bustier". I'd find boned shirts and dresses that did a decent job of forcing the garments' intended shapes upon my body, but nothing with actual steel ribs or anything. Really, my first corset was at Dark Garden - a stunning leather Dollymop that I had seen hanging on the ready-to-wear rack. As soon as it was on, I was hooked! My torso looked exactly as I had hoped it would for the past ten years, and right away I had one made to order in a smaller size.

3. What is your favorite style of corset?
My favorite style of corset is probably the waist cincher. While I love all the over-the-breasts corset styles and necklines, for me, the waist cinch is so versatile and wearable that I often wear one under a tee shirt, just knowing my waist looks fierce even under a drapey, baggy top. Also -- sometimes I'll wear my normal bra with the waist cincher, which is HELLO, the best push-up of all time.

4. What do you like about wearing corsets?
First and foremost, I love how my body looks in a corset. Not that I don't love my body in general, because I do, but I am naturally shaped like a slender 12-year-old-boy -- I have strong shoulders and NO waist. Wearing a corset gives me an unnaturally tiny silhouette, which looks amazing especially under structured clothes. I also love how being in a corset makes me feel protected, kind of. All the structure around my torso feels like I've got armor on or something!

And secretly, I take a little pride and pleasure in the reactions I get from co-workers and friends when they find out I 1) have a corset on at that moment, and 2) wear them all the time, and can walk briskly, eat, drink, and dance in one.

5. What is the greatest style influence in your life?
Stylish 80-year-old women. Hands down. I love irreverent fashion where one's look owes nothing to trend but rather is a total expression of whimsy and one's history. My style icon: Iris Apfel.

David Mohammadi and Annie Nozawa in a photo by Matthew Lee Valentine Davis.


Mr. Pearl & his creations.

Corsets, black and white photo by: Michael James O’Brien, color photo by: Francois Nars.


Read More

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Autumn's Travels: London

Not all masked balls turn into Bacchanalian orgies but that doesn’t mean you can’t still have plenty of fun. Last Friday, Kensington Palace hosted their second annual Wild Boy’s Ball, named in honour of a foundling discovered in 1725 brought to the Palace where King George I held court. Originally from Germany, “Peter” amused the monarch and bemused the staff with his unconventional hair, bedroom antics and his strange choice of clothing. These days, the palace is used on an unofficial basis by Prince Harry. MORE

Read More

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Break a Leg! Sense and Sensibility

We at Dark Garden love live performance arts: dance, music, circus and theater! Here is a quick shout out to our friends at TheatreWorks in Palo Alto, California: Have a Great opening night this Saturday and a smashing run.

Sense and Sensibility
Based on the novel by Jane Austen
Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts
August 24—September 18, 2011
http://www.theatreworks.org/shows/1112-season/
 

Read More

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Customer Highlight: Frédérique


Frédérique is wearing her Dark Garden wedding ensemble of an Aziza custom corset
and tiered ruffled skirt in silk dupioni.
Photo by Claudia Akers Photography

Frédérique
510.239.FRED(3733)
TheLadyFred.com
Frédérique is a professional belly dancer, instructor and performer lucky enough to travel the world doing what she loves most to do; dance.

1. What is your earliest corset memory?
My earliest corset memory involves my older sister, she was a deathrocker at 18 and wore a corset or two at that time; I thought it looked so beautiful on her and thereafter I knew one day I'd have my own.

2. Describe the first corset you ever wore.
To be honest, I've tried a few on here and there throughout my life but they always looked funny or didn't fit right...there was always something that kept me from either borrowing it from my friend or buying somewhere. So the first corset I ever truly wore was my perfect and beautiful corset made for my wedding day; most amazing fit ever, I was comfortable the entire 10 hours through photographs, dancing, sitting, standing, all of it...and I had never really worn a corset before so I wasn't savvy on what to expect besides what I'd been told, that it would get very uncomfortable a couple of hours. Didn't happen to me!

3. What is your favorite style of corset?
That's a hard one to answer as I only own one corset and all the styles I've ever seen look so beautiful that it'd be hard to pick just one! I love them all!

4. What do you like about wearing corsets?
I like how feminine and sexy they are, how beautiful and surprisingly comfortable they are as well! I also love that you need someone else to help you put it on, AND take it off. ;)

5. What is the greatest style influence in your life?
I pull inspiration from all manner of styles for my personal style, however I'd have to say that I pull the most from the vintage eras, the most prominent being cira 1880's - 1920's.
Frédérique is wearing her Aziza custom corset and tiered ruffled skirt in silk dupioni.
Photo by Claudia Akers Photography

Detail of garters covered in silk dupioni matching the Aziza corset.
Photo by Claudia Akers Photography
Read More

Monday, August 29, 2011

Customer Highlight: Annie Nozawa

Annie is her Dark Garden black leather Dollymop overbust corset.
Photo by Annie Nozawa


Annie Nozawa works in marketing.
web page: vivisaqueen.blogspot.com (a blog about my dog Vivienne)

1. What is you earliest corset memory?
I think I was in my early teens, cruising around on the interwebs when I somehow stumbled upon a website about fetish and fashion. Within this site was an excerpt from an interview with Mr. Pearl, famed corset-maker, where he talked about how "to be caned is to know the great pleasure of correction" and, of course, waist training. I was fascinated. I didn't realize one could eventually train one's waist into a more attractive, slimmer size. So followed my secret obsession.

2. Describe the first corset you ever wore.
Technically, the first corset I ever wore wasn't really a corset -- nor was the first "bustier". I'd find boned shirts and dresses that did a decent job of forcing the garments' intended shapes upon my body, but nothing with actual steel ribs or anything. Really, my first corset was at Dark Garden - a stunning leather Dollymop that I had seen hanging on the ready-to-wear rack. As soon as it was on, I was hooked! My torso looked exactly as I had hoped it would for the past ten years, and right away I had one made to order in a smaller size.

3. What is your favorite style of corset?
My favorite style of corset is probably the waist cincher. While I love all the over-the-breasts corset styles and necklines, for me, the waist cinch is so versatile and wearable that I often wear one under a tee shirt, just knowing my waist looks fierce even under a drapey, baggy top. Also -- sometimes I'll wear my normal bra with the waist cincher, which is HELLO, the best push-up of all time.

4. What do you like about wearing corsets?
First and foremost, I love how my body looks in a corset. Not that I don't love my body in general, because I do, but I am naturally shaped like a slender 12-year-old-boy -- I have strong shoulders and NO waist. Wearing a corset gives me an unnaturally tiny silhouette, which looks amazing especially under structured clothes. I also love how being in a corset makes me feel protected, kind of. All the structure around my torso feels like I've got armor on or something!

And secretly, I take a little pride and pleasure in the reactions I get from co-workers and friends when they find out I 1) have a corset on at that moment, and 2) wear them all the time, and can walk briskly, eat, drink, and dance in one.

5. What is the greatest style influence in your life?
Stylish 80-year-old women. Hands down. I love irreverent fashion where one's look owes nothing to trend but rather is a total expression of whimsy and one's history. My style icon: Iris Apfel.

David Mohammadi and Annie Nozawa in a photo by Matthew Lee Valentine Davis.


Mr. Pearl & his creations.

Corsets, black and white photo by: Michael James O’Brien, color photo by: Francois Nars.


Sunday, August 28, 2011

Autumn's Travels: London

Not all masked balls turn into Bacchanalian orgies but that doesn’t mean you can’t still have plenty of fun. Last Friday, Kensington Palace hosted their second annual Wild Boy’s Ball, named in honour of a foundling discovered in 1725 brought to the Palace where King George I held court. Originally from Germany, “Peter” amused the monarch and bemused the staff with his unconventional hair, bedroom antics and his strange choice of clothing. These days, the palace is used on an unofficial basis by Prince Harry. MORE

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Break a Leg! Sense and Sensibility

We at Dark Garden love live performance arts: dance, music, circus and theater! Here is a quick shout out to our friends at TheatreWorks in Palo Alto, California: Have a Great opening night this Saturday and a smashing run.

Sense and Sensibility
Based on the novel by Jane Austen
Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts
August 24—September 18, 2011
http://www.theatreworks.org/shows/1112-season/
 

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Customer Highlight: Frédérique


Frédérique is wearing her Dark Garden wedding ensemble of an Aziza custom corset
and tiered ruffled skirt in silk dupioni.
Photo by Claudia Akers Photography

Frédérique
510.239.FRED(3733)
TheLadyFred.com
Frédérique is a professional belly dancer, instructor and performer lucky enough to travel the world doing what she loves most to do; dance.

1. What is your earliest corset memory?
My earliest corset memory involves my older sister, she was a deathrocker at 18 and wore a corset or two at that time; I thought it looked so beautiful on her and thereafter I knew one day I'd have my own.

2. Describe the first corset you ever wore.
To be honest, I've tried a few on here and there throughout my life but they always looked funny or didn't fit right...there was always something that kept me from either borrowing it from my friend or buying somewhere. So the first corset I ever truly wore was my perfect and beautiful corset made for my wedding day; most amazing fit ever, I was comfortable the entire 10 hours through photographs, dancing, sitting, standing, all of it...and I had never really worn a corset before so I wasn't savvy on what to expect besides what I'd been told, that it would get very uncomfortable a couple of hours. Didn't happen to me!

3. What is your favorite style of corset?
That's a hard one to answer as I only own one corset and all the styles I've ever seen look so beautiful that it'd be hard to pick just one! I love them all!

4. What do you like about wearing corsets?
I like how feminine and sexy they are, how beautiful and surprisingly comfortable they are as well! I also love that you need someone else to help you put it on, AND take it off. ;)

5. What is the greatest style influence in your life?
I pull inspiration from all manner of styles for my personal style, however I'd have to say that I pull the most from the vintage eras, the most prominent being cira 1880's - 1920's.
Frédérique is wearing her Aziza custom corset and tiered ruffled skirt in silk dupioni.
Photo by Claudia Akers Photography

Detail of garters covered in silk dupioni matching the Aziza corset.
Photo by Claudia Akers Photography