Last night I went to a costume party. There is a bit of a saga attached to this, so bear with me for a moment.
I have a love/hate relationship with said affairs. This started as a child, when my natural shyness battled with my mother's amazing creative talents - I wanted everyone to see my incredibly cool costumes, but I didn't want them to see me.
Being the legendary woman that she is, Mama solved this by making outfits which hid me completely from view. For example, Frosty the Snowman (with me inside sheets filled with stuffing); a Christmas Tree (complete with copper wiring frame, soldered by my father) - these were worthy of consecutive Oscars for Best Costume Design, 1977-78.
And the same thing has continued - sort of. Love the dress ups, panic about being looked at, but invariably wear something which means everyone will look at me because what's the point in going to a costume party if you don't make an effort? Hence past efforts of flappers, very, very dark angels, the inevitable 80s redux and others which I am a little scared of in retrospect.
We come to last night.
I was going as a naughty fairy.
The naughty fairy costume was too big. Said fairy would possibly have fallen out of her fairy tutu, which would have been entertaining, but not really a look which I feel needs promoting by myself when there are iPhones around.
Thus - the Return of Catwoman ('The Dark Knight Rises' style).
Walking down the street to the party in a skin tight catsuit, with thigh high boot thingies, cat ears and a mask on, I did think to myself 'what the HELL am I doing?'; but considering I was in the company of someone dressed in a pale blue safari suit, with the most horrendous wig and chalk-white false teeth, and another individual frocked up like a schoolgirl fantasy from SuckerPunch - meh. What the hell.
Then we reached the door. Rang the buzzer.
'Hey, it's CATWOMAN!' I heard over the intercom.
And the childhood nausea rose up in my throat. People were going to stare.
Well, of course they were. I am a five foot ten redhead wearing a bloody skin tight catsuit. Roll eyes.
And then something kicked in. It was an unfamiliar feeling, but I think I had felt a nudge of it once or twice in my life. You may have experienced it yourself.
Maybe it was the Sisterhood of Catwoman herself. Julie Newmar, and Lee Meriwether, and Eartha Kitt, and Michelle Pfeiffer, and Halle Berry - and yes, Anne Hathaway - all throwing their collective purr power behind me. Whatever it was, it worked. I had a great night, I felt amazing - and yes, the compliments were, well, complimentary (mind you, once we were out at a public venue, some were on the slightly disturbing side, but take the good with the bad I say).
Women of the world, unleash your inner Catwoman. You don't need the whole outfit either to make it happen. It is all about attitude.
Although the mask is fun.