10.12.2011

Fluffy Dresses vs. Moth Wings

Last time I walked around Barnes and Noble, the cover of every YA chic book had a character in a full ball gown. In many of the getups I saw, it would be awfully hard to break into a jog, let alone a sprint. I prefer my protagonists to take the novel sensibly attired in something that allows mobility. Then they can face the conflicts of the novel at a sprint, or at least a jog. And they can sneak. Every try to move stealthily in a full ball gown? They rustle. A lot. 

Of course, back in the day, I was guilty of drawing all sorts of equally useful fashion designs. These, and especially the central figure, introduce a whole new set of pitfalls in high fashion.
Clearly, I should have my own fashion line.
Forget ballgowns - if people like me ruled the fashion world, everyone and their dog would go around wearing things as useful as an enormous pair of Luna Moth wings. But! If giant moth wings became the fashion standard, it would have several obvious benefits to the economy:

  • Doorways would need to be widened for everyday convenience. This would reemploy carpenters and construction workers everywhere and solve the housing crisis. Just think of the industry! Statistics suggest that 99% of houses have doors.
  • We would have more manufacturing and tech jobs to allow a fully electrical wardrobe. This would be necessary to give the wearer full control of flapping and potential gliding. 
  • A powered wardrobe would necessitate more efficient portable power. This would lead to more efficient solar panels, with perks like ultraconvenient cell phone chargers in your shirt. What could be better?

This is not much better either.
At least she can move her legs.
Better, dare I say, may be something lighter, perhaps with your legs free. I distrust any book with really bulky dresses on the cover. It says to me that the character will be able to leisurely glide through all the problems of the novel. And that's not what I want in a story. You have to find the right outfit for the pace. Whatever she wears on the cover, I picture as she jumps over every obstacle, through every hoop. (Can she even fit through a hoop in those dresses?)


Rule of Hoops: If wearing a hoopskirt doesn't hamper your protagonist, you may need to pick up the pace of the narrative. 
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