Archive for category Toys and Equipment

Thoughts on Blindfolds


Blindfolds are one of Joy’s favorite pieces of bondage equipment. They’re one of mine, too, and consequently we use one frequently for our adventures together. In my mind, there are four large benefits that a blindfold brings to the table:

  1. A blindfold increases the feelings of helplessness and vulnerability of the wearer. Sight is our most relied-upon sense, and one of its primary functions is to allow us to detect and avoid danger. Without vision, one feels vulnerable because that function is lost. Even in a BDSM scenario, when all parties present are trusted and the environment is safe, the inability to see instinctively causes a blindfold-wearer’s sense of helplessness to increase, and therefore heightens the feeling of dependency and submission.
  2. By blocking the wearer’s vision, a blindfold enables you to more easily leverage the element of surprise in your adventure. Surprise can be powerful, especially if you’re introducing something new. Suppose, for instance, that you have purchased a penis gag, and your partner has never seen it. Do you think their reaction when you place it in their mouths will be stronger as they recognize it solely from feeling the shape on their tongue?
  3. Removing the ability to see also frees the mind to imagine. Consider the example concerning the penis gag I just described. The actual penis attached to the gag is probably only about 2 inches in length. However, if your partner has never seen it, and can only estimate it from feeling it fill their mouth, they will imagine it to be much longer and severe than it really is. By restricting their ability to see the reality of the gag, you allow their mind to magnify it to reflect what they both fear and desire at the same time.
  4. Restricting the sense of site allows the blindfold-wearer’s mind to focus on their other senses, intensifying their input. For our purposes, this comes most into play with the sense of touch. A blindfolded party often finds that they become more sensitive to tactile stimulation of all types, both pleasurable and (if desired) painful.
  5. What’s the best type of blindfold to let you capitalize on these four benefits? Well, you have many options from which to choose!

    The most basic option would be the DIY model—simply take a handkerchief or suitable stand-in and tie it over your partner’s eyes. While this sort of works and is both cheap and makes use of materials you probably already have around the house, truth be told it’s not all that effective. The challenge is that an impromptu blindfold like this tends to do a poor job of fully blocking vision, and frequently becomes dislodged or falls off entirely during the course of an adventure. That being said, if you’ve got access to no better alternatives, by all means go this direction! You may not gain the full benefit, but it’s better than nothing.

    If you move up to purpose-made blindfolds, however, you’ll do far better. They come in many styles and colors, and you can choose whichever fulfills your sense of aesthetics best. I’m a sucker for black leather, of course, so that’s what our preferred blindfold is made of, but as I say, please yourself when it comes to looks. Functionally, though, there are a couple things you should look for.

    First, I highly recommend going with a model that has an elastic band to hold it in place. I’m not a fan of elastic in most applications, and originally I thought a buckle closure would be better. However, in actual practice, the elastic band performs better in two respects:

    • It’s much quicker and easier to get on and off.
    • It does a better job of staying in place, because the elastic tightens around the contours of the wearer’s head even if the blindfold slips around a bit during the course of an adventure. A buckle closure, if it slides out of place, cannot tighten itself and therefore falls off. There are few things worse than being right in the middle of an elaborate scene and having to stop to try to get the blindfold back on!

    Second, as blindfolds are generally worn for a fairly extended period of time, it’s wise to get one that’s comfortable for the wearer. Therefore, a soft interior side and a strap that fits the wearer’s head are important.

    And third, you want a blindfold that will totally block the wearer’s vision. The most they should be able to see is a band of light around the edge of the blindfold—if they can see through cracks around where it fits to their face, it defeats your purpose. However, to date I’ve not come across a purpose-made blindfold that doesn’t meet this standard, and hopefully you won’t either.

    If you continue further up the severity scale from basic blindfolds, you cross over into head harnesses (sometimes with built in gags and sometimes not) meant to ensure the blindfold stays put, and then into partial and full hoods. Though I applaud their purpose, I’ve not been a fan of head harnesses because I don’t like the way they look. However, that’s purely a matter of taste, and yours may differ from mine. Hoods, though, can definitely come in useful, and do an excellent job of blocking vision without any possibility of coming loose. We have a favorite that we use when a bit of anonymity and depersonalization is in order, and it has a built-in blindfold that completely obscures Joy’s sense of sight.

    Enjoy Yourself,

    Jake

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Locking Gear

Joy and I have several different sets of cuffs. There are our favorite black ones with little red hearts on them–we use them all the time. It is great fun to restrain Joy in them and watch her twist and turn in the throes of passion. I find few things more erotic than the sight of a helpless woman reaching orgasm after orgasm.

We have assorted other sets of cuffs, including a single pair of metal, police-style cuffs which have been relegated to the back corner of a bottom drawer in the playroom bureau. Though I like the weight and strength of metal, they are simply too uncomfortable and too likely to cause abrasion for Joy to wear for most activities. We have a backup pair of plain, leather cuffs that our friend Beth wore upon occasion when she visited, and an old pair of velcro cuffs that come in handy when Joy needs to be rapidly secured.

But we also have one other set of cuffs that sees occasional use, a set that possesses a unique characteristic that comes in handy once in awhile. They are unadorned black leather, heavily constructed, each made to wrap twice around one of Joy’s limbs to provide additional strength. We have one pair for Joy’s wrists, and a second for her ankles, and each of the four comes complete with a small, brass padlock. These are our locking cuffs, and when they have been placed upon her, Joy truly cannot escape their grasp without assistance.

We use them only rarely. Frankly, the extra step of having to close the padlock on each one can be fussy and time consuming, and in most cases is unnecessary. After all, while I am quite certain that Joy could, if she desired, unbuckle our favorite, non-locking leather cuffs if she wanted to and had sufficient time, she’s never tried. Why would she? I release her whenever she needs release, and she is always free to request to be set loose at any time. Standard cuffs provide plenty of restraint for any adventure, and therefore they are what we use most frequently.

The advantage that the locking cuffs bring is purely mental. Joy is quite aware that when they go on she will not be getting loose on her own, and the act of letting me lock her in them without knowing quite what I have planned for her can be…inspiring. The sound of the padlocks as they “snick” closed, one by one, reinforces the inspiration. I save the padlocks for last on purpose to capitalize on this, buckling each limb in place and then adding the padlocks–one, two, three, four.

With the padlock in place, the hasp of the leather buckle can no longer slide back through the slot in the leather that it extends through. The buckle cannot be opened without the padlock being removed. And tug as she likes, Joy is held fast, her arms and legs extended, open and vulnerable to whatever may come.

I like the feeling of power this provides, and Joy gets extra excitement from the accompanying feeling of helplessness. However, this reward does not come without a cost. In addition to the extra time required to insert and close the padlocks, there is risk involved. One risk would be that I might lose a key, making extradition challenging. For this reason, all of the locks are keyed the same, and I have several different copies of the key. However, a more serious risk comes from the reality that Joy cannot escape the cuffs without my assistance. What if, in the midst of an adventure, I had a heart attack and collapsed? (Lord knows she makes my heart pound!) How would she escape? You see the challenge here.

Hopefully this risk is a small one, but it is nevertheless real. And so, as I said, we save the locking gear for special occasions, when it is truly called for. In addition to the locking cuffs, we have a locking bondage belt which has proven useful. We also have a locking stock, which is a good idea, though poorly designed. We do not have a locking collar, and due to safety concerns, I’m not a fan of them–it is too easy for me to imagine some sort of choking situation and being unable to remove the collar quickly.

So our locking gear is only rarely used, and there are risks and drawbacks associated with it when we do break it out. Why have it at all? Well, I think it comes down to that lovely “snick” sound when the padlock closes. That sound makes it perfectly clear to Joy that she relies solely on me to free her, and that she has no choice but to comply with my wishes until the lock is opened. As the commercial says, that small noise is “priceless”.

Enjoy yourself,

Jake

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Good Vibrations

I have written product reviews for a variety of vibrators that Joy and I frequently use during our adventures together. However, it occurred to me that some folks new to the world of bondage and BDSM might have questions about this. Why would you need a vibrator in the first place? Isn’t BDSM more about tying someone up and spanking them? Experienced practicioners are already well aware of the value a vibrator, but if you’re not so experienced and not already aware, read on…

The truth of the matter is that both the subcategory of bondage and the larger world of BDSM are really about a power exchange. At its most basic, one partner, the submissive, voluntarily gives up control of themselves to the other partner, the Dominant. This power exchange lends great energy to the actions that the two partners perform together, and can lead to extremely passionate, fun and satisfying sex, among other things.

So where does a vibrator come in? The vibrator provides to the Dominant a stimulation tool that never gets tired, never has a bad day, and never quits in its efforts. More than that, it comes in a compact package, and therefore can be used in places and positions where other options won’t work as well. And finally, its stimulation is more concentrated and is generally more effective at generating sexual arousal than just about any other option, including body parts arguably specifically designed for that purpose!

What I say applies most strongly when the submissive partner is female–that’s generally the target audience for vibrators. Therefore, for the purpose of our discussion, let’s assume that we are working with a female submissive. However, much of the following can also apply to a male submissive, though perhaps some techniques may need to be adjusted to accommodate differences in anatomy, and the effects will likely not be as great.

One of the great joys in Domination comes from the ability to control one’s partner, to cause them to do and feel things almost in spite of themselves. This includes, most definitely, the ability to give your partner an orgasm. There are few other things that place your partner more under your control than making them reach orgasm. As dedicated readers know, one of my favorite things is bringing Joy to a climax when her limbs are cuffed and she’s unable to do anything other than twist in her bonds. And it’s even better when we’re talking multiple orgasms, one after another, each one coming right on the heels of the last.

Using a vibrator allows me to achieve this much more often than I ever could without one. For one thing, the effect of the vibrator applied directly to Joy’s most sensitive area is intensely pleasurable to her. There is no other tool I own, including my tongue, that can create such immediate and powerful excitement. In other words, the vibrator simply does an outstanding job of applying concentrated stimulation in a highly pleasurable spot.

In addition, it can do so for a long, long time. Unless you are bionic, you simply can’t compete with it’s implacable endurance. When your tongue would get tired, when you have already reached your own climax and lost interest, when you are tired and sleepy, the vibrator will keep on going. That’s a really good thing, because one of the biggest advantages of BDSM sex is that the adventure can last for a long time, allowing lots of buildup and a nearly explosive finish. You know how you always read that women needs lots of foreplay? Well, this is foreplay that you will really enjoy, because it is just as exciting for you as it is for your partner.

Want to try something fun? Bind your wife or girlfriend’s arms over her head, then bind her legs apart. In this position, she’ll feel somewhat vulnerable, as she cannot use her arms to push you or your hands away, and she cannot close her legs. (Remember, however, that she can call a halt to everything if she chooses–this is always and only consensual BDSM!) Then, using your hands, tongue and yes, a vibrator, take your time to bring her to a climax. Give her a minute to catch her breath, but don’t unbind her. After she’s calmed down a small bit, slowly start over, using hands, tongue and vibrator (aren’t you glad now that you have it?) to get her off again if you can. And then, if you think she can handle it, go one more time. Save your own pleasure for last.

Feel free to change her position during one of the rest periods if she starts to get uncomfortable, or if you want a different angle or view, but make sure she stays bound so that she remains in your control. Ask her how she feels afterwards…but you may need to give her a few minutes to recover her ability to speak. And watch how eagerly she lets you bring her to bed the next time you try this.

After a few days or weeks of performing this activity, you may be able to start skipping the cool down periods in between, and take her straight from one orgasm to another. Joy sometimes can have five orgasms in a period of about 10 minutes. The only reason we don’t go longer is that she begs me to stop because she feels like she’s going to explode.

Another nice thing about the vibrator is that you can use it in awkward positions. Consider the hog tie position, for instance. In this position, your partner’s hands and legs are brought together behind their back and tied, leaving them nicely helpless, but also blocking ready access to her genitals. You can easily use the vibrator to reach those delicious, secret parts of her body, however, while at the same time kissing and caressing your partner’s lips and nipples, or if you’re feeling a bit less noble and a bit more selfish, availing yourself of her mouth. The vibrator will let you give her pleasure at the same time as she’s giving pleasure to you.

Or it can serve as a helping hand during intercourse. Imagine that your girlfriend or wife is tied spreadeagled on the bed, and you are inside her. You can use the vibrator to add extra stimulation directly to her clitoris as you thrust, helping her to achieve her climax at the same time as you achieve yours.

Note that there are vibrators designed for anal use as well. While you can use a standard vibrator for anal play, I recommend you get one designed specifically for that purpose. Good ones are shaped so that they can be inserted into your partner’s rear entry and remain in place on their own, which frees up the hand that you’d normally need to hold it . While an anal vibrator won’t usually bring your partner to orgasm by itself, one thing it does nicely is raise their overall excitement level. Not only does this make taking them over the brink to climax easier, but it preps them for other activities that may benefit from arousal, including pain related activities such as wearing nipple clamps or being spanked.

One thing to note is that women who have never used a vibrator sometimes need a bit of an aquaintance period to get used to it before it provides its full effect. This would be true for anal vibrators as well. Be gentle when first introducing either model, and don’t give up if your partner’s response is not as powerful as you were hoping the first time around. Chances are good that her reaction will improve as the experience becomes more familiar to her.

The bottom line to all this is as follows: If you don’t already own a good vibrator, you should get one. And if you and your partner are into anal play, you should get an anal vibrator as well. No matter what you think now, you’ll thank me after you try one or both of them a couple times. And your wife or girlfriend will thank you for it as well…profusely!

Enjoy yourself!

Jake

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Joy’s Favorite Spanking Tool

My own personal favorite tool for spanking my wife’s bottom is my bare hand. There’s a particularly satisfying “thwack” when it comes down on Joy’s behind, and I love the feeling of her soft skin under my palm and the way she jumps when I land just right. Plus, when I have her over my lap and the quarters are close, other implements tend to be cramped or crowded. My hand works best when we are up close and personal.

However, Joy feels differently, I believe. After a considerable amount of experimentation, I believe she has settled on the flogger we purchased from Conina as her absolute favorite implement for spanking. As she reported out a few weeks ago, it was the item she chose when I required her to pick a tool to be spanked with. After a couple late-night discussions on the topic, I believe I understand why she likes it so well.

The flogger is a gentle tool. I know that its name doesn’t sound gentle–the word “flogging” conjures up images of medieval punishments. However, a BDSM flogger is not the cat o’ nine tails you may fear. Instead, its “falls” (the strands that hang from the handle) have little individual bite to them when they connect–they don’t weigh enough for that. Instead of biting, they slowly build up a heat in Joy’s bottom that eventually turns to a burn. And because it’s a gradual escalation, it allows her to slowly relax into the spanking, sinking down into it bit by bit. Other tools, including my hand, are a tad more abrupt.

Now, I can certainly appreciate the benefits of the flogger, and due to its gradual approach, I have begun to use it frequently as a warm up tool. Once Joy has reached the proper frame of wind under the flogger’s tender ministrations, I then move on to other instruments…my hand, or a paddle, or the Viper’s Tongue. Because she’s already been properly pre-heated, Joy’s bottom can accept their somewhat rougher attentions more readily. And that way we’re both happy.

But I have lately discovered an additional use for the flogger that is catapulting it into a primary position in our spanking arsenal. Joy has historically been very reluctant to be spanked anywhere other than on her bottom. Oh, true, I have forced the issue upon occasion and required her to spread her legs to allow me to spank her vulva. That has been only a rare occurrence, though, and spanking other targets–notably her breasts–was something she’s always been very afraid of.

The soft and gentle approach of the flogger has, however, allowed me to begin a slow exploration of Joy’s body, allowing its tendrils to trace a path beyond Joy’s rear end and over her thighs, up her back, under her arm and around around to her breasts. It is quite the exhilarating experience to watch Joy’s nipples grow fiercely erect under the flogger’s fingers as she stands beneath the hook in our playroom ceiling, her hands bound high over her head to fully expose her body. We remain in the very beginning stages of our exploration, but this direction definitely promises excitement for both of us as we move forward. So, the flogger is rising in the hierarchy of our spanking tools. Whereas I once thought it was too soft and low-intensity, I’ve developed a new appreciation for its talents.

Lucky flogger…it gets to kiss Joy all over her body…

Enjoy yourself,

Jake

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DIY BDSM: A Ring Set into the Floor

Being sick gives one plenty of time to think. Consequently, I did quite a bit of thinking over the past weekend, and while many thoughts were of the “How much longer until I can take another dose of cold medicine?” variety, others were on more interesting topics. And by Monday, I had recovered sufficiently to turn those thoughts into action and take advantage of the Martin Luther King holiday to make a mid-day trip to the home improvement center.

For several months I’ve had this vision in my head. I see Joy wearing her cupless, leather corset, kneeling before me on the playroom carpet. Her hands are cuffed in front of her to a metal ring set into the floor. It’s a lovely vision—cuffing her to a ring like this presents so many opportunities! With her hands bound out of the way, I can make free use of her mouth if I choose, or I can lift her up onto her hands and knees and mount her from behind doggy-style. But best of all the ring enforces a kneeling position, a position of subservience—she cannot rise as long as her hands are cuffed to it.

When it occurred to me that I could use such a ring in other ways as well—picture Joy standing with her hands pulled high and cuffed to the hook in the ceiling and her feet cuffed to the ring in the floor as I take the switch to her fine rear end—it became clear that I needed to take steps. The ring in the floor could not be confined to idle thought, but instead needed to become reality. But the thought of simply screwing a metal hookeye into the floorboards didn’t seem satisfactory. Not only would it mess up the carpet, but it would present a tripping hazard and get in the way if we needed to move furniture around. So I devised a better solution.

At the home improvement store, I purchased two sheets of half inch plywood and several lengths of 1×2. I stopped in the hardware section to look at gate latches, and found one suitable to work for the ring itself. It came with the required nuts and bolts for installation, and I already had the remaining necessary wood screws and tacks, as well as a carpet remnant that could be cut to fit. When I returned home, I had all the materials I needed to build my vision.

Here is my plan. I will cut the plywood so that I can piece it into a six foot square and then install the gate fastener in the center, bolting it securely onto the wood. I will cut four 6’ lengths of 1×2 and miter the ends so that they can fit together in a square, and I will screw them to the bottom edges of the plywood to form a frame to hold the square together and hold the plywood off the floor so that it does not teeter on the bolts that hold the gate latch. I will run additional lengths of 1×2 across the bottom of the plywood inside the square frame for strength and to act as braces so that the plywood does not bow under weight. And when I am done, I will cut the carpet to cover the top and sides, slitting it to allow the gate latch to poke through. I’ll tack it into place to create a soft surface for kneeling and so nobody will get splinters.

When I am done, I will have created a six-foot square, very low dais with a ring set into the center. The dais will be portable, so I can pick it up and store it out of the way when I don’t need it (walk-in closets are so handy), or move it from one room to another when adventure calls somewhere outside the playroom. However, when I place Joy on the dais and cuff her hands to the ring, her own body weight will prevent her from being able to move the dais—she will be effectively cuffed to a ring set in the floor, just as I picture in my mind.

To date, I have only purchased the materials. Construction will likely begin this weekend and since the thing is so simple, should go quickly. Won’t Joy have a happy surprise when I let her test drive the contraption in the playroom after I get it finished?

I love DIY projects like this. Not only do they allow me to indulge my very favorite hobby in new and exciting ways, but they let me burnish my guy credentials through hands-on construction in the process. In a way, it’s kind of like a (very) adult version of Legos, only replacing the typical Star Wars with a Fifty Shades theme. What could be more fun that that?

Feel free to borrow this idea yourself if the urge hits you. When I get mine done, I’ll post pictures and a report of how Joy and I inaugurated it. In the meantime…

…enjoy Yourself!

Jake

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