07 November 2013

Fat activism, dressing up and paper dolls

I keep this box in with a drawer of photographs but haven't had a peek inside for ages. I can't believe I've been taking it for granted. It's certainly worth an outing.

It's me as a dress-up doll. My love made it for me in 1991 when I had no money, and when it was impossible for me to get things I liked or wanted to wear. Sadie is a nickname from that time, and Pizazz on Parade is the name of Mr Blackwell's bitchy celebrity fashion column in the National Enquirer, which obsessed us both. The box is a shoebox he customised, and some of the outfits are drawn in in felt-tip on the back of cereal boxes

In 1991 I still had a long way to go in terms of feeling ok in my own skin. Indeed, that's a life's work. Back then I didn't know anyone I could talk to about fat, I was very isolated. The pair of us were starting to think about queerness and drag, which turned out to be other big features in our lives. Anyway, this is one of the many things that made a difference to me. It's made with so much love and humour, it's beautiful. The normals treat us as though our lives are barren, but they are wrong. I have been so lucky to have been able to see myself reflected in this way, to have been helped to imagine other things for myself. Silly, made-up, gorgeous stuff.

Box O'Sadie!

Wigs and outfits

Beehive nudey

Voluptua was my cartoon alter-ego
from a series of comics we made together

Another Voluptua look from when she
fought the dastardly Anemone Men

Rubbery, Avengers type look

Executive Realness

Big hair farm girl

A fat lady in a bikini was a
big deal in 1991, plus flingaway big hair


1 comment:

Francesca said...

That's beautiful! What an amazing keepsake.