Bebe Taian: One outfit, two styles.

July 16, 2017

One outfit, two styles.

It's amazing how much an outfit can change just by changing a haircut. Really, it transforms everything!

This is a deep grey, nearly black silk kimono with grass pattern, paired with a shibori red obiage and a Taisho-era dragon pattern ro obi in pale tans, off-whites, and gold. The obijime is a deadleaf oak green, the collar too heavy for the season. Plain white tabi, with straw-bottomed wooden zori with black/white straps.

All in all, a relatively plain outfit. What made it more impressive, I think, were finer details to imitate Eisen works and other ukiyo-e artists. While makeup was fairly neutral, a tiny bit of deep pink around the eyes, black mascara, and deep red lips with a dusting of lime green powder in the centre mimicked the ultra-luxe kyoubeni, without needing to apply 30+ layers to get the lacquered shiny effect.

Plus, I was in luck! Papaya has a long green banner in the shop window, a little darker than the lime green powder I used from Shiro Cosmetics to use as a backdrop. I took advantage, of course.

The only disadvantage to this method is that you must absolutely not rub your lips or eat/drink anything- a difficult task when there's a Teavana in the same mall. The goal is to have an almost matcha-coloured centre to the lips, with the outer parts in safflower red. The trick is that if you put on the red liner (I used Nyx in Poppy red) and fill in the whole lip, then apply the green powder, you'll turn it brown. If you outline where the red should be and fill it in like a paint-by-numbers, you'll leave a blank space for the green to stay true to colour. I use a lime green that shines yellow (duochrome) so that it looks closest to the real kyoubeni appearance. Use beeswax or another clear lipgloss to keep the lips moisturized underneath the makeup, or it'll flake. 

This is a similar outfit a year later with some minor changes: I now have summer obijime and obiage. I picked the same red colour in a ro obiage, much more appropriate than shibori, with a similarly-muted colour obijime with thin streaks of silvery-blue to match the grass and tiny portions of the obi embroidery. The shoes are the same as before.

The makeup is the same as before, the collar a bit lower. And I somehow *still* haven't bought any new haneri. Ugh! How am I so picky about a piece of cloth you barely see?! But it's true... or, I see one I like, but I get distracted by another piece I can't pass up, and plain haneri are so common... yet I don't own more than two or three. Gah! 

And what on earth do people do with such short sleeves? How does anyone make 19" sleeves look stylish or delicate? So frustrating!

But a haircut like this somehow makes this outfit look much more modern, and somehow more... aggressive? "Fierce." Before, it was one thing to wear dragons, which aren't common on female clothing, but the overall feminine-coded appearance was 'tough, but sweet'. With a short bob cut, it's suddenly all claws! The lime green lips now look much more bold! What do you think?

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