Wednesday, 12 October 2016

Who Loves A Bit of Dressing Up?

Hands up who likes dressing up? Are you a lover or a hater? Three guesses which I am. Of course I am. I am a LOVER! WOOHOO! I love that shiz to death! There’s nothing more fun to me than making a big old deal about something with full blown costume thrown in….it completely adds to the excitement! If you give me an invite which has the immortal words “Fancy Dress” on it…you can double dutch bet your bottom dollar I’ll be there!

Why do people like to dress up so much? Well it’s a little bit of fantasy isn’t it? You get to play someone or something else for a few hours. You can completely change persona if you feel like it! My parents had a 70s themed Ruby Wedding party and people didn’t even recognise me. I loved it! “Look, it’s me JESS! ….see?” I was so over excited, bless.

It can also be quite ceremonial. When a friend had her 40th last year, we were all instructed to come in medieval gowns and the venue was the basement of a medieval castle. That felt very ceremonious and grand.

It’s also quite a traditional thing to do, especially around Halloween. People used to go Mumming and Guising (yes this is completely lifted from Wiki!) dressing in disguise and going from house to house reciting songs for food. How it’s degenerated into hoards of sticky kids dressed up in highly flammable neon and black clothing with their hands out demanding fistfuls of e-numbers and sugar, I DON’T know.

I also wondered a little bit about the psychology of dressing up and wanted to know if anyone on the interwebs had a psychological explanation for those of us who love a face thick with grease paint, silly wigs and comical pants. And the two main theories (quoted in this article) I found were (loosely) that people who are drawn to fancy dress tend to be either people who like to reinvent themselves or people who are immature! People who reinvent themselves tend to frequently change careers or can be social chameleons. Well the later is certainly true for me. I tend to adopt how I act to fit in with those around me. Which is not probably something I should freely admit to because perhaps it makes me sound like a phoney…but I would say mostly I do it to make who I am with feel comfortable. Actually I am not sure that’s better…now I sound completely sanctimonious! Oh god…I don’t know!

The other theory being that people like the childishness of dressing up, and it’s a form of nostalgia and a recreation of the excitement we felt as kids when we did so. I think this is definitely true for me. I am EXTREMELY childish and downright refuse to grow up. You can’t make me! This is why I’m obsessed with Christmas too. I like food, presents, sparkly things and fizz and I want it all NOW…there I said it!

Is it true that for the most part men are not as fond of it as women? Is that a sexist statement? I ask because I truly don’t know and would love to hear your experiences. I do know that I find it attractive when a man is willing to make a fool of himself (which is good given that my husband is a dab hand!). I think that’s part of the attraction, to not take yourself so seriously.

So why then, in the last 10 odd years or so, has it become “tradition” for girls to dress up as “sexy” versions of Halloween characters?! This utterly baffles me. I was asking friends online about this earlier and realised that it really is just a female thing. Because you get “sexy witch” outfits but you sure as shit don’t get sexy wizard costumes! What is up with that?

Now don’t get me wrong… I can dress like a ho bag as much as the next person…nothing wrong with occasionally wanting to display the goods….but when it seems to be the only option available to buy….I have serious what-the-fuck-itis.

And don’t even get me started on the choice for larger ladies. Thankfully Kellie from Big Fashionista has done exactly that in her scathing piece about ASOS and it’s pathetic collection for the chubs. Including a pink, crushed velvet wrap dress. Because that just screams HALLOWEEN doesn’t it?!

Here are some brilliant pics/ideas my friends shared with me of their costumes over the years. They are a mixed bunch between sexy and silly and that’s totally cool. I am all about the choice, peeps!

Sarah from Whimsical Mumblings says: I don't like the conventional costumes. Witches/vampires etc. Apart from on children, they're cute. I like film characters, cartoons or jokey costumes. When I was hugely pregnant i dressed up as a nun. Get it? This year i'm going as Coraline!

Jade from Late for Reality:  I always like to go scary for Halloween but often family parties are the most inappropriate place to go all out gore! I did Maleficent last year which was awesome! My best tip would be to concentrate on the hair and makeup then go simple on the outfit. It is a lot cheaper than making a costume. 

Kelly from Kelly Allen Writer says: It's my FAVE time of year and this month I get to dress up at least 4 times! I like to mix it up and do what I want and SEXY might be part of it but it might not, but I don't overthink the sexy side, I do what I want and don't really care what anyone thinks. I once went as a half fine half burns victim and terrified everyone at Uni, I've been a zombie several times, vampire... Etc tonight I am a 'host' for the kids event so a mask and a big green tulle skirt and then for Halloween I am going for a skeleton vibe, we have rocky horror next weekend and then a few events where I will be whatever takes my fancy, maybe a dead pirate... I just love it to death!!!! Xxx

Cathryn from CardiffMummy SaysOh gosh, I remember at university we all dressed up for Halloween one year and decided to go gruesome, whereas most girls went sexy. We just thought it would be a good laugh. We painted our faces bright green as witches, my friend stuck rice crispies on her face as warts. We went to a fab party and despite how hideous I looked, I remember talking to the man who is now my husband for ages.However, the green face paints left us all with a green-yellow tinge that did not come off for a few days. I was mortified! The next year we went sexy!These days, I don't think sexy is appropriate as I have three small children - but I do love to dress up usually as a witch or a cat.

Sara-Jayne from Keeping up with the Jones FamilyI've been a pregnant pumpkin, female Frankenstein and corpse bride so far :)

Naomi from Tattooed Mummy’s Randoms: I always want to be sexy, not just at Halloween, but not slutty. Just being semi naked or wearing a tutu isn't sexy. I've been a bride of dracula, a bat, and this year I'll be wearing a morphsuit! I'm a fan of being scary though, as that's what the tradition of Halloween is about, so it's never not a scary character , I don't like the American idea of just dressing as anything you fancy

So what about you? Do you like dressing up? Or do you think it's just for kids? 

Cuddle Fairy
Admissions Of A Working Mother
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