Monday, April 1, 2019

Modish Matrons #34: Humor in Fashion

Welcome to Modish Matrons April Fools edition!
Comment YES if you can't imagine life without humor. 
Humor comes in so many forms and shapes, styles and flavors, tastes and traditions, that it probably shouldn't surprise us that at times we don't get each other's sense of humor at all. I pretty much always am open to any interpretation of the themes I come up with, and always ready to relax the rules simply because to me, the greatest beauty of life lies in freedom, and that includes the freedom to understand, interpret and express ideas in the way that is unique to each of us. That being said, I don't expect everyone to approve of  or even understand my vision, and I am eager to see your interpretation of this theme. 

I am also super curious to read my partners in crime BEATE und TINA's posts, 
to see their outlook of the theme.

Humor as a subject fascinates me. Why do we see one thing or situation as comical and others as an excuse for drama or even tragedy? Why are certain things laughable to some people and serious to others? Why do most people easily ridicule others (in their faces or behind their backs), while remaining heroic characters of their own inner story at all times? 

There are probably as many styles of humor and tastes for humor in the world, as there are styles of cooking and tastes for a certain dish or cuisine - in other words, as many as there are leaves in a forest, drops of rain in the skies. and cups of coffee in city cafes. Humor can be local and universal, dark and lighthearted, sarcastic and gentle, silly and sophisticated, dry and mischievous. What's yours?

In fashion, I believe, there are also many ways to create a humorous impression. One of the simple ways would be an unexpected accessory which put a smile on your face, like a child's drawing engraved in a jewelry piece (such as in my previous post). A more complex way to express humor would be a combination of mixed patterns, shapes, textures and proportions either to create a certain character, or to express a certain idea or feeling.  And for this post, I made an attempt to do the latter.

To me, polka dot is one of the most humorous patterns there is, especially large scale or a mix of different sizes or colors. As soon as I got this sequin polka dot top (also shown in NOVEMBER 2018), I wanted to combine it with my polka dot tulle skirt (shown earlier in DECEMBER 2017 and MARCH 2017). I knew it would not be an everyday outfit, but rather something a bit out there, a bit too much, a little out of my comfort zone, or outrageous even. I knew that I would have to deliberately brake a whole bunch of written and unwritten style and fashion rules, such as "age / shape / size-appropriate", or "flattering", or "good taste". I wanted to do it because I find breaking the rules mischievous, and when done playfully, it is precisely my sense of humor. 

Playfully make a little trouble, 
tease the sense of established status quo, 
create a nonsense just because...
that's what is funny to me.

The rest of my mischievous outfit came together rather spontaneously. A denim jacket for a light layer (and to tone down the circus vibe for good citizens of Tacoma who were rushing to meet Michelle Obama in a local venue that night). My comfortable funky shoes with colorful mushroom socks. A gallery of thrifted vintage pins and brooches which seem to make a nice coherent display (I bet that the happy polka dot woman wearing lapti, or bast shoes, and carrying a baby on her back, comes from my part of the world). Oh, and two different earrings (also thrifted) - because it was impossible to choose just one pair.

I'll be honest with you, I went back and forth with posting this outfit. I loved it, and it was fun to wear it for my photo session and trying a new hot restaurant in town, but I also felt a bit uneasy about it - what reaction would I get from my fellow fashionistas? And I've decided to go through with it and just be myself. So what if people won't approve? They won't have to, as much as they won't have to understand my sense of humor, share my dreams or live my life. 

Mural art by Chris Sharp @chrissharp3000
(2016 Puyallup Ave, Tacoma WA, near the Dome)

Photos by Justin

And now I am very curious - do you believe in humor in fashion? 
What does it mean to you personally?

Sequins top - ASOS (old)
Tulle skirt - Lane Bryant (old)
Denim jacket - Eloquii
Shoes - Dansko (old)
Accessories - thrifted

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  1. LOOOOVEEEEE the outfit!!!
    i even love the base of it - top & skirt together - without the whimsical accessories and would have no problem to take it serious with elegant shoes & coat!
    but the theme is humor - and you filled it out with bravour - with your lovely sense of humor!! and how genius to take photos at this special place! <3
    and i love to read your thoughts about the topic, you are such a wise and warmhearted person..... i must admit that i do look down my nose on "simple" kinds of humor.....i´m a humor snob ;-D
    tons of hugs! <3 <3 <3 xxxxxx

  2. oh yes, I'm a believer! I totally believe in humor in fashion, it's a part of self expression, personality And Fun!!. Actually I don't understand how people can keep themselves so solemn! "remaining heroic characters of their own inner story at all times" as you wrote (love this phrase!). I feel like a comic character almost every day of my life, even in dramatic situations (my humour is quite absurd and surrealistic)
    I love polka dots and love your denim coat and accessorizing!, cherries on your bag, an apple as a brooch! love everything!. And I totally love your pictures on the fabulous background of this mural! Street art and Fashion! doubled fabulousness!

  3. YES! I am also a believer. I sometimes check with my husband and daughters and ask them, "does my wearing this embarrass you?". They always very kindly smile (smirk?) but say "no". Oddly, I am a humor snob also and take myself too seriously, "remaining a heroic character in my own inner story". My husband laughs at everything while I'm always trying to discover an inner meaning (and often do see layers of disguised pain in things). I say, "everything is not funny!" and he replies "I think it is!". But he dresses conservatively while I go "out there". We're a funny mismatched pair. I guess that's comedy of the best kind on a daily basis. I've learned that laughing is a choice! Kudos to you Natalia! You rock! I love the idea of you crossing paths with the good citizens of Tacoma rushing to meet the elegant but warm hearted Michelle Obama in your glorious outfit. She would love you if she saw you! You're a star! I love you! xo

  4. What a fun post!
    We go to Alaska every May and I believe that your brooch is one by Barbara Lavallee
    ( Her artwork is charming and makes one smile. So you are correct about the Russian connection since Alaska was purchased by the U.S. from Russia.

  5. I absolutely believe in humor in fashion. Polka dots are such a fun print and I adore the mix.

  6. Yes, yes, yes! I think fashion should always be fun, and express a sense of humour. I do love everything about your fabulously whimsical outfits, from your polka dot mix to your cute little bag, your magic mushroom socks and the bevy of brooches! And posing against the umbrella background was a stroke of genius! Lots of love xxx

  7. Hihi Yes YES YEEEEESSSSS :) I am Humor in Fashion! Humor is so essential for me. Can you imagine?
    Natalia I love this outfit! Polka dots are great and you look fantastic. You was uneasy? No no you are amazing! :)
    This wall is a great location for blog pictures, I think like Ann genius to shoot there.
    With a very huge hug and much love, Tina

  8. Frankly, life is so crap sometimes that anything we can do to inject a little humour into it can never be a bad thing.
    The only troll I've ever attracted to my blog seemed utterly baffled by the playfulness of some of my outfits. Pattern mixing in particular did her head in, to the point where she felt moved to ask if I was having a laugh at my readers expense. I tend to take the attitude that if any outfit of mine has ruffled or annoyed someone then I'm probably doing it right.

  9. I love your mixed polka dots - seeing your photos just made me smile so much, they're so full of happiness and personality. Keep dreaming your dreams and living your life!

  10. Your photos have made me smile on this grey, damp and hungover day! xxx

  11. Dear Natalia,
    I love your enchanting polka-dot outfit, it's adorable!
    And the umbrella image background excites me a lot!
    My kind of humor? I know many different ways - I especially like absurdities and puns. The today linked outfit was also created by "Playing with a word". Blogger Ines lives in Hamburg and regrets that she cann't wear a dirndl there - as I do in Austria. So I created a Hamburg Deern-dl ("Hamburger Deern" is a description for a girl from Hamburg ...) ;-)
    Hugs from here,

  12. Honestly I do not find this funny, as I am way too busy appreciating the creativity. That said, it is an outfit that brings a smile to my face. I love the mixed dots and the denim coat. The brooch with the polkadots is precious and the background is thoroughly delightful.
    This is my cuppa tea! You are quite right that humor is subjective and unique. Mine alternates from silly to rather dry.
    I love to be playful when I post. I find these personality centered outfits to be by far the most fun. Fabulous and fun my friend!

  13. Yes to humour in fashion! I love your whimsical take on humour in fashion. That mural art is gorgeous and the way you made yourself (and your outfit) a part of it is brilliant. I love the double polka dot look, there is a 3D feeling to it. Not sure is it because of the sequins or the double polka dot skirt or the combination of both, but it is certainly a look that is both visually interesting and pretty. Love the fun accessories, the bag and the brooch.

    As to my personal humour, I've been told I have a very dark Balkan sense of humour by other people. I think there are many different kinds of humours I enjoy, but definitely dark humour is a part of my culture, you could say. I enjoyed reading your thoughts on humour in fashion. As always, you write intelligently and beautifully.