Wardrobe Spotlight – Suspenders

A note to everyone: updates are going to be erratic again as a go through exams! I’ll get back to about once/twice a week after June.

Wardrobe spotlights are in intended to show off the versatility of basic wardrobe staples and why they’re worth investing in.

Also known as braces, these were traditionally worn to hold up pants and were meant to be a type of underwear not outerwear. Today most people wear belts or buy pants that fit them (I guess) so when they wear suspenders it’s as a prominently displayed fashion statement. (A postmodern statement about pants as a metaphor for life being uplifting rather than a rumpled mess around your ankes?) But if you think outside the box a little they can be used to rock a lot of different looks:

1. Traditional

Suspenders to hold up your choice of bottoms. A pair of nice-looking pants and button-up shirt gets you a very gentlemanly look, but suspenders looks equally as awesome worn with shorts or skirts and a t-shirt for a more punk and hipster look.

2. Why don’t my pants fall down?

A variant on the traditional. Instead of suspenders holding up your choice of bottoms your bottoms hold up your suspenders while they hang idly around your thighs. Also known as the “undo your top button and roll up your sleeves” variant.

3. Harness and extra straps

Instead of holding up your bottoms suspenders can be used to provide extra interest by holding up your midriff. In this picture I created a harness sort of thing by clipping the suspenders onto a belt around waist. You can also do this with bustiers, underbust corsets, etc etc.

4. Giving a skirt extra layers

Okay this looks a little weird, but no weirder than a lot of stuff you’d see on a runway. I’ve tried a similar look using suspender belts which also works quite well, and you could also try pinning extra folds with safety pins. The aim is basically trying to replicate something like this. Realistically you won’t get there since that pattern was especially drafted to be hooked up, but you can get pretty close to a cheap-ish bustle skirt.

I hope your mind is now sufficiently blown. Go out and be fabulous.

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3 responses to “Wardrobe Spotlight – Suspenders

  1. Harness: drooooool

    Now that that’s out of the way…even though the suspenders attached to your skirt pulling the ruffles upwards looks a little, as you say “weird”…it gives an effect I find pleasing. Maybe you could have your mid-wais belt be upcycled to include clips below it to hold up your skirt…kind of like those clip things that hold up garters…
    next spotlight…garters/clip things/stockings

    or maybe…fashion terminology *facepalm* I feel like I a total n00b when I talk about fashion full stop.

  2. With the traditional approach, how does one coordinate one’s suspenders with one’s lady parts? It doesn’t look entirely comfortable or likely to sit right all day. Or is that the price of fashion?

    • I clip them closer to my sides and hips so they sort of slide down between my arm and bust. I’ve never had a problem with suspenders being uncomfortable but I have a standard bust size so it might be uncomfortable for people with larger busts. I guess try them on at a store or a friend’s to see if they give you any trouble?

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