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let's kiss and make up! - adventures of a red-headed stepchild in the house of love
mermaid on the mic
let's kiss and make up!
so, I'm just back from doing makeup for an "alternative fashion show" at the Crucible. I was recruited by a talented friend who had committed to do both makeup and hair for the show. I'm so glad she asked me - it was a blast!

I truly love the alt fashion - the styles are so much more original than what you'd see at a mainstream show, and, likewise, the models are all unique individuals, instead of being cookie-cutter semi-anorexic "beauties" (with attitudes to match!)

I also saw some friends who I haven't seen in ages, which is always a treat.

I did my favorite makeup "trick" (my own original solution for long-wearing lip colour - you can drink, eat, dance etc and it still looks fab!) on a number of models, and was VERY gratified to have other models come up to me saying "you did my friend's lips, can you do mine too?"

it was also quite gratifying to teach various makeup techniques to a number of the folks I worked on. I gave out a ton of info on such things as the finer points of fake eyelash application, how to do flattering/dramatic eyeshadow, my lippy trick, etc.

one of the things I love the most about doing makeup is teaching folks how *they* can do it themselves! it's almost too bad that I didn't go into makeup full-on, because there are many aspects that I truly enjoy and am good at - especially teaching.

however, there are also a number of reasons why I chose as I did - for one thing, designing and creating things for bunnywarez offers so much more creative latitude, and also makeup is an intensely competitive business - it's just not worth it to me to put in all the work and time to claw myself to the top (or even just the middle!)

nevertheless, it is a great sideline, and something I enjoy immensely.

I was especially gratified to get to do eyes and lips on a completely adorable punk rock girl, who ("in a previous life" was a pal and cow orker of mine) - and then later to see her noshing on veggies which were absolutely drenched in oil - while her lip color held up admirably! (let me tell you, this is *not* one of those "cutie girls" who is careful of her makeup - though she is damn cute!)

when I saw her with the veggie plate I snuck up and demanded to know whether she was still waiting to go on. she was off the hook - she'd already made her star turn - but it really didn't matter because her lip color was STILL going strong!

soooo gratifying! yay, me. :-D

in fact, the whole thing was very gratifying. all of these models were folks who would never appear on a standard catwalk, for one reason or another. but all of them were such unique beauties!

these alt-fashion events give so many beautiful people who don't fit the insane (and unrealistic) strictures of "fashionable" an opportunity to get up on stage and SHINE!

there were boys in dresses, ballet girls (on pointe) who looked like they actually enjoyed regular meals, a 4' tall bellydancer, firedancers, pretty pretty girls who usually never wear makeup... one of these was one of my favorite models - she was so lovely just as she was, but I could also see a positive effect from my artistry. everything I did had a subtle yet noticeable effect.

I started off with a custom "tinted moisturizer" just for her - I mixed a light moisturizer with some liquid concealer - this creates a sheer yet effective base for further work. it evened out her skin tone without looking heavy or "mde up".

on top of that I did dramatic eyes, as per the designer's concept... she wanted blue "summery" eyeshadow, but since green looked so much better on this lovely redheaded girl, I lined her eyes with two shades of green (plus deep blue at the corners) then blended greens and blues to work the designer's concept into an attractive look that worked for the model. I was so pleased when both of them expressesd appreciation for my work!

this kind of creativity is definitely a big part of what I enjoy about these things.

I also very much enjoy the opportunity to do dramatic makeup - since it's stage (rather than print or f2f) the makeup needs to be intense - so that the people in the back can see it.

it's a real creative challenge, and very different than doing glamour makeup for a mainstream show - and SOOOO much FUN!

I also had a few firedancers. for them, I emphasized the eyes, using smoky liner (intense but softly/smudgily applied) with a shiny/glowing highlighter around the eyes and over the cheekbones to help their facial features stand out.

it's tough to compete with open flames, but when the glow from the flames illuminates the shine around the eyes, it draws the attention back to the dancer instead of letting the fire itself be the whole show.

I also did makeup for several models who were showing handmade glass necklaces. they wore black, understated clothing, so as to showcase the gorgeous handmade glass jewelry. for them, I also made the eyes the focal point of the makeup, keeping it on the subtle side so as to emphasize (rather than distract from) the gorgeous necklaces and glass earpieces they were showing.

it was a BLAST and a half - as was the entire night! it took a big chunk of my fryday evening, but it was the kind of thing I love to do - between the elements of creativity, cameraderie, bumping into old friends and just plain helping out with a massively collaborative creative effort, I was very pleased to be part of it.

I also went over to the "recycled fashions" table and asked "what do you have in a size 10?" - the answer: "nothing here."

oh. ok.

(not to be too political but... looking around at the audience at this venue, I would place myself as about a medium... so, from a purely pragmatic standpoint, I would think that if there are people in the 8 - 10 - 12 - (GAWD FORBID!) 14 or 16 range who are interested in alternative fashion, it might be a good idea to make things to fit (and sell to) these folks!)

er, but, nevermind.

I can make my own stuff.

but, srlsy, not everyone can - or wants to!

I want to make alt fashion available to people who are NOT a size 4 - 6 - 8!

don't get me wrong - I do understand that grading is a tricky thing. as a consumer, I have learned that some lines tend to fit me, and others do not.

grading seems to be an individual thing, like designing itself. there is NO WAY to make clothing sizes follow a standard, or for everything to fit everyone.

nevertheless, I think it is incredibly short sighted to make so many things for size 4 - 6 and ignore everyone else - since the VAST majority of people are bigger than that!

the "skinny girl" market is saturated. wanna make money? make stuff that fits real girls!
11 smooches or Gimme Some Love!
From: catwoman69y2k Date: April 14th, 2007 08:18 am (UTC) (Link)
Oooh....sounds like a neat event with variety. I too appreciate non-cookie cutter bodies (like curves for instance!). Im glad you know what you want and rock doing your thing!

silverseabear From: silverseabear Date: April 14th, 2007 12:43 pm (UTC) (Link)
I want to make alt fashion available to people who are NOT a size 4 - 6 - 8!


Sounds like it was a fun gig. Thanks for telling about it.
penguingrrl From: penguingrrl Date: April 14th, 2007 03:54 pm (UTC) (Link)
nevertheless, I think it is incredibly short sighted to make so many things for size 4 - 6 and ignore everyone else - since the VAST majority of people are bigger than that!

I totally agree. Some people are not as lucky as us seamstresses who can alter things if they so choose. But going from smaller to bigger is no easy task and I rarely, if ever, even try that. But, I am also one to love to revamp older clothing. Anyway, it is crazy that even the "alternative" crowd is not that great at making stuff for the medium or bigger crowd.

Sorry to have missed the show. I would have loved to have seen your makeup. And I would also love a tutorial from you sometime.
technopatra From: technopatra Date: April 14th, 2007 07:59 pm (UTC) (Link)
Agreed, and why stop at 14-16? Why should bigger people be penalized for not fitting into fashion-industry dictated "standards"? So my weight is a judgement that I don't deserve the same access to pretty things as everyone else? That since I've got two jobs and am in school and have trouble making time to learn how to sew all my own clothes, I should be condemned to frumpy, crappily made fat girl clothes?

Shopping has turned into a humiliating experience for me, and I hate fashion shows with a growing passion. A few months ago asked a local alt designer (who to this day can't seem to remove me from her stupid email list no matter that I've asked, politely, three times -- anyone know miss velvet cream? Can you tell her to fuck the fuck off for me?) why she didn't make realistic sizes and she emphatically responded how most of her fashions go all the way up to a 12 or 14. Oh, let me pin a fucking medal on you for that, thanks.

I envy that you can enjoy all this, M, without feeling fury at being excluded from actually partaking in the fashion you are supporting. But then, yer own style rawks the freakin' house, so you don't need those wankers. I'd love to feel less bitter about it. Sigh.

evilmommytina From: evilmommytina Date: April 14th, 2007 06:22 pm (UTC) (Link)

Damn it...

I miss all the fun alt events... keep me posted for anything like this in the future, okay?

Did you take photos? Have any done of you working? Come on girl - spill it - share it!

p.s. I also do alt make-up... goth, industrial, primitive, etc...

Hugs, T
From: ninarawkstah Date: April 14th, 2007 09:23 pm (UTC) (Link)
> wanna make money? make stuff that fits real girls!

amen sistah!!
From: silussa Date: April 14th, 2007 10:23 pm (UTC) (Link)
20 myself; I'd be happy to see more stuff in my size range (especially footware).

As for the "custom tinted moisturizer"....you've seen my skin shade; NOTHING on the market is sufficiently pale. Can you give directions?
kshandra From: kshandra Date: April 15th, 2007 04:50 am (UTC) (Link)
I started off with a custom "tinted moisturizer" just for her - I mixed a light moisturizer with some liquid concealer - this creates a sheer yet effective base for further work. it evened out her skin tone without looking heavy or "mde up".

OMG yes. I was doing stage makeup long before I ever wore it socially, and never quite learned the trick of applying foundation in a manner that wasn't designed to be seen at a distance of 20 feet. I discovered tinted moisturizer at the Lancome counter, maybe five years ago, and it's the ONLY thing I'll use on the rare occasions I wear makeup.
silverfae From: silverfae Date: April 15th, 2007 01:33 pm (UTC) (Link)

You have so much fun!

You gotta spill that lipstick secret, I'm mean, I'm ALL THE WAY out here, how can I get the good stuff all the way over there?
robotter From: robotter Date: April 16th, 2007 11:45 pm (UTC) (Link)


It's not a makeup artist trick, but last year when I went to get makeup for my wedding, the MAC chicas introduced me to their lip product ProLongWear. Basically, you "paint" the color on your lips and let it dry, and then put a gloss over the top which you have to reapply constantly (the color tends to feel really dry). My lips were absolutely flawless for over 12 hours! I love this stuff!

Someday, I'm gonna be lucky enough to get some makeup lessons from Mermaid Makeup! I think I do okay, but I've never had any professional training and would like to learn how to change things up (especially with eye makeup).
thecatsmeowww From: thecatsmeowww Date: April 28th, 2007 03:32 pm (UTC) (Link)
Sounds like a blast!!!
11 smooches or Gimme Some Love!