Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Tarot Fashion: The High Priestess

This Tarot Fashion project of mine is partly the result of working with the Rider Waite Tarot deck closely in the same period of time I was watching too many fashion-design-themed reality television shows. I have previously redesigned and modernized the costumes worn by the figures in the cards The Magician and Strength. I create these because while there are many intricate and fascinating elements in the Rider Waite tarot, one particularly diverse aspect of it is the clothing, crowns, hats, shoes, tights, accessories, etc. that are worn by the characters. When I look at some of them I come up with ideas for how they could be adapted or modernized. I'm no fashion designer, so these may not be any good, I just needed to get them out of my head.

So this is The High Priestess, re-imagined. I was having a block when thinking of what to make for her for the longest time, but then out of the blue yesterday I got an image in my head that rolled out onto paper, and from there to the computer screen. I didn't have to do much planning or deep thinking for the Priestess like I had to for Strength - she just emerged, pretty much whole and fixed, and that was that.

Rather than trying to very literally translate the look of the H. Priestess, this time it came out rather abstracted, incorporating more of the general, overarching elements from the card. Also, instead of being obviously modern, she turned out a bit ambiguous in style. I think this could be worn by a fashion-loving rich person in the present, or in the past by a real priestess. 

The dress is meant to evoke the watery quality and wonderful drapery of the original H. Priestess' clothes, and incorporates the crescent and full moon from her crown into the necklace and the lighter swath of fabric running up from the top of the dress and up into the hood (maybe more like the reflection of a crescent moon in the water than a direct vision of a crescent). 

As for technical details, the necklace-like bit is meant to hold the edge of the hood down, and it clips onto a shoulder-strap that's hidden by the hood. The hood itself is meant to be draped in such a way that it flows into the back of the dress, similarly to the way it does on the front.

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