Posts Tagged bdsm apparel

Useful, But Obsure

While I am a guy and shopping usually isn’t my forte, one thing that I do enjoy shopping for is bondage equipment. Every so often I’ll go visit the sites for the Stockroom or Extreme Restraints just to see what’s new and different, and to check if anything in particular catches my eye that we simply must add to our collection. Just my little contribution to the economy, I suppose.

Early last year during a virtual shopping trip I came across an item that has become a staple for Joy and I, and it’s uncommon enough that I thought it might be interesting to write about. The idea for the product is simple, but few manufacturers seem to make them, and I don’t understand why. Perhaps no one knows about them? Well, all the more reason for me to write a post…

The product I’m talking about is our bondage belt. The lovely model in the picture (image courtesy of Extreme Restraints.) is wearing one around her waist. This belt is attractive and comfortable enough that Joy has worn it out in public as part of an outfit. It’s made of thick, black, padded leather (natch) and has shiny, metal d-ring connection points at each hip and behind the back, some nice shiny rivets holding the pieces of leather together, and a buckle at the front to hold it closed. Oh, and a fun and important point–the buckle is made to accept a padlock, just to be sure it won’t come unbuckled without express permission.

Why use a bondage belt? (insert evil chuckle here) Well, we find many uses for ours:

  • The D-ring at the back makes a quick and efficient point to cuff Joy’s hands to when they need to be out of the way behind her. A quick “snick, snick” and Joy’s hands are restrained.
  • The D-ring at each hip offers an interesting pair of locations for connection points, allowing me to cuff Joy’s hands at her sides. This is a particular favorite position of mine, as it positions her hands where they are visible and she can almost interpose them, but not quite. It’s kind of a tease, I suppose, akin to holding something just out of reach, so it tantalizes but cannot be attained.
  • The belt is thick enough to act almost as a waist cincher, providing a nice, tight, closed-in feeling when it is worn. Joy enjoys feeling it fit snugly around her waist.
  • The locking buckle provides an extra edge of excitement. There’s just something about the sound of a padlock closing that sends a shiver of anticipation up Joy’s back.

Of course, you can use it as a tie-off point for various rope bondage positions as well. As I’ve mentioned before, I’m not a rope guy, but I could certainly see the connection points proving useful if I was.

Despite all these practical advantages, however, I have to say that the number one benefit this belt provides is the way it looks. Seeing Joy wearing the belt and nothing else with her hands cuffed to her sides is a sight to behold. Or perhaps she could wear a pair of stockings…the kind that stay up on their own with the built in garters. Now that’s a good idea!

Anyway, the bottom line is that we both like our bondage belt, and I’m not sure why they don’t appear to see more widespread use. Seems to me most folks could use one hanging in their playroom wardrobe beside the corsets. You know, the wardrobe where you keep the high heeled leather boots and the red FMPs…

Hmmm…stockings with built in gartners…I don’t think Joy owns any of these, and they could really come in handy! Maybe I better go shopping to see if I can find her a pair…

Enjoy yourself,

Jake

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My Favorite Panties

Before I start, I probably ought to clarify that I mean “my favorite panties for Joy to wear”. For my own personal attire, my tastes run more toward boxer-briefs than panties.

Let’s be honest–I love leather. I love the way it looks, I love the way it feels, and I love the way it smells when it gets warm. I also love the primitive feeling it evokes when I see it made into a garment. Fortunately, Joy feels the same way, and because of this, we own lots of leather stuff…a leather collar, a leather blindfold, leather corsets, a leather bra, and naturally, assorted leather cuffs.

We also own several pairs of leather panties. Now, leather isn’t an obvious material for panties in many ways. It doesn’t breathe well, for one thing, you can’t toss it in the washing machine, and it tends to be hard to avoid panty-lines when wearing it. Because of this, leather panties almost always fall into the category of special occasion “decoration” rather than serving as a typical, wear-them-all-day items. Nonetheless, there are many different makes and models of leather panties available if you do some looking around.

We purchased my favorite panties from JTs Stockroom last year, and we’ve used them many times since then. Surprisingly, they are not crotchless (our experience so far with crotchless leather panties has been poor) but I love them dearly just the same. Joy’s rear end looks absolutely scrumptious in them, and I mean that word “scrumptious” literally, as in “good enough to eat”. They are black (my favorite because it carries such a dark connotation and because it looks great against Joy’s pale skin), and while the front is featureless, smooth leather, the other side is different. The panties lace up the back, and there is something about those laces and the way they frame Joy’s tender ass that absolutely drives me crazy whenever she wears them.

The problem with non-crotchless panties in most bondage positions is that you have to remove them before immobilizing your partner or they will tend to get in the way when festivities commence, if you know what I mean. I very much like to place Joy in bondage, and because of this, our modus operandi when Joy wears these it so stick to hands-only positions, such as bound overhead to the hook-eye in our playroom ceiling. That way I can keep the panties on her for a nice long time and admire the view before I finally reach the point where removal is required.

Even though these panties are incredibly hot to look at, there’s no denying that they are leather and therefore not really suitable for long-term wear. Plus, imagine the panty-lines those laces would make! Therefore, though we break them out frequently, once the scene is over they go back into storage to wait for the next time–they don’t get worn around the neighborhood.

Though most lingerie gets old after the novelty has worn off and gets tossed in the back of the drawer to give the newer purchases pride of place in the erotic-wear collection, these panties have stood the test of time. When I instruct Joy how to dress for an adventure, I keep coming back to these panties every month or so…the sight of her wearing them and nothing else simply calls out to me.

Hmmm…what do you know? I seem to have talked myself into changing our adventure tonight so that we can incorporate these panties into it. Something a little darker than what I originally had in mind, I think. Anyway, I’ve rhapsodized about my favorite panties long enough. Suffice it to say that if you like leather, I couldn’t recommend these more highly.

Enjoy yourself,

Jake

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No Fumbles

In a recent comment, Conina mentioned that her husband hates “fumbling around” with equipment when they are in the middle of…well, you can probably guess what they would be in the middle of. And I have to say that I share her husband’s sentiment. You spend all this time building up excitement and arousal to a fever pitch, and then…pop! You hear that hissing sound? That’s the sound of the air going out of the balloon. That’s the sound that you hear as some sort of equipment problem or awkwardness gets in the way, deflating your Dominance and your partner’s submission, and letting that hard-earned excitement escape into the ether.

Obviously this isn’t a happy situation, and therefore it’s one I try hard to avoid. Over the years, mostly by trial and error, I have learned a few lessons about how to minimize the fumbling problem as much as possible. Here are the rules I try to live by:

  1. Be prepared! Yes, it’s the Boy Scout motto, but it’s also a good rule for Dominants to follow. In this case, “be prepared” means decide what toys and equipment you will need for your adventure in advance, then lay them out so that they’ll be immediately available when you need them. Not only will this reduce fumbling, but it will also help keep you on track if you’re a planner like I am. I’ve even gone so far as to lay items out left to right, in order of use. That way, I can start from the left and move on through until the scene is complete, and I won’t accidentally forget, for instance, that I wanted Joy blindfolded before I broke out the penis gag.

    One disadvantage of laying things out in advance is that they are visible to your partner, which can tend to ruin your ability to leverage surprise to heighten excitement. However, there’s an easy answer to that problem—simply cover the row of equipment you want to keep hidden, so that your partner can’t see the gleaming stainless steel of the Rope Master you plan to break out once the panties are down and the blindfold is on.

    If you’re not a planner, however, what do you do? What if you prefer to be more spontaneous? My personal suggestion would be to plan as much as you can anyway—otherwise, a certain amount of fumbling becomes inevitable. Consider at least laying out a selection of equipment that you think might be interesting so that you can easily locate what you need. There’s nothing worse than being one snap hook short and having to go digging through drawers to find one while your partner waits, half-bound and impatient. Alternatively, choose a scenario that doesn’t require equipment.

  2. Advance preparation pays off when it comes to dress and and various items you wear as well. If you have a leather harness that you feel fits the mood you want to set for the evening, don it before you begin. It’s not usually much fun for your partner to wait while you struggle to put it on. If you believe it’s best to keep your outfit discretely hidden until you’re ready to show it off, wear clothing over it. Taking clothes off can be done it a jiffy, much faster than putting them on.

    If you are going to leverage a strap-on during your playtime, put that on before you being, too. You can wear pants over it as well if you want to keep it out of sight—just be sure to pick a pair that doesn’t fit too tightly. This way you are ready to go as soon as the moment to employ your add-on tool arrives—no waiting to pull it up and tighten the straps!

  3. Consider your partner’s dress too! Make sure what they wear fits into your plans. For instance, suppose you plan to bind your partner hand and foot spread-eagled on the bed, place clamps on their nipples and then give them a slow and thorough fucking. If they begin the scene dressed in a full body corset with gaters and stockings on over their panties, you’re going to run into some obstacles. The corset will block access to their nipples and interfere with the clamps. The panties will get in the way when it comes time for intercourse, and you won’t be able to remove them without first removing the garter and stockings. And nothing is going to be able to come off without first releasing your partner’s limbs from the bedframe. All of this untying and retying takes time and interrupts the flow of your adventure!

    However, if you ensure that your partner is appropriately dressed, you can avoid this hazard. Consider peek-a-boo or cupless bras and crotchless panties in the above scenario. They can still prove ornamental, but will not interfere with any of the activities you have planned. No time need be wasted with detaching and reattaching–you can proceed straight through from start to finish with no loss of momentum.

In short, I guess that my advice to avoid the fumbling problem is to look ahead at the details of your scene as you envision them, and mentally walk through the steps you and your partner will follow from beginning to end. Look for possible problems and note the props and equipment you need. Lay out your equipment in advance, and take steps to avoid the potential problems you identified during your mental walkthrough. If you follow this process, you should be successful in greatly reducing the number of fumbling incidents you encounter.

Plus, let’s be honest. It’s lots of fun to walk through the scene you’re planning in advance in your head. What better to think about?

Enjoy yourself,

Jake

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In the Hood

One of the presents I got Joy for Christmas was a bondage hood. It’s an inexpensive, lightweight, spandex model—we hadn’t used one before and I didn’t want to spend big dollars when I wasn’t sure if she’d like it. However, it’s proven to be both useful and effective in some interesting ways.

Don’t confuse a hood like this with a blindfold. Oh, it covers Joy’s eyes, and it does obscure her vision somewhat, but the spandex is thin…thin enough to breath through. And while I’d call it translucent rather than transparent, it lets enough light through that shapes and movement are distinguishable. It’s really not very good at blocking Joy’s vision.

What it is good at, though, is creating a sense of isolation and anonymity within her. When she wears the hood, it covers her entire head, leaving only her lips and mouth exposed. She becomes literally unrecognizable (well, at least to anyone who doesn’t know her body the way I do). Joy is quite aware of this effect–the idea that she is no longer identifiable seems to fascinate her. In addition, because the hood clings tightly around her head, she feels closed in, as though she occupies a small space all to herself. Often I’ll place a true blindfold on first with the hood over it to maximize this latter feeling. The combination of hood and blindfold creates total darkness for her–there’s not even an outline of light around the edge of the blindfold.

Because she feels anonymous, the hood seems to enable Joy to do and enjoy things she might not be as comfortable with if she wasn’t wearing it. And because she feels closed in, apart from the world, she tells me she can imagine herself as an observer, watching her body participate in experiences rather than feeling the need to take control of them.

We can, for instance, role-play a scene in which Joy is surrounded by naked men, each of whom vies for the attention of her mouth on his erect member. Joy has a fairly strong limit around exhibitionism, so even the thought of a situation like this usually raises fears that prevent her from being able immerse herself in it. However, with the hood on, she has not only participated in such a role, but found herself taking great excitement in it. (And for anyone wondering, no, we have only role-played this scenario.)

So, counter-intuitively, the hood that encloses Joy gives her a greater feeling of freedom. But it provides something more as well, something for both of us.

Because it makes Joy anonymous behind its black façade, it also contributes a sense of objectification to a scene. Its dark, featureless exterior, broken only by Joy’s lips (ideally sporting a bright red lipstick) hides Joy’s personhood and makes her into a mouth, a set of lips, a tongue…at least for the duration of the adventure. Joy is free to picture herself as an object to be used, a treat to be partaken of at her Dominant’s whim, a body with the sole purpose of providing pleasure to her owner.

Objectification can be a powerful contributor to a sense of Dominance and submission, because it removes the objectified party’s volition and makes them into a possession rather than a person. Joy seldom feels more submissive than when she wears the hood and lets herself be used. And, because this creates an amazing feeling of excitement in her and much of my own pleasure comes from the excitement she feels, it gives me a serious charge as well.

If I had my druthers, I think I’d prefer to have a heavier bondage hood for Joy to wear, perhaps one made of leather (have I mentioned that I love leather?) or latex. That way no extra blindfold would be required. But the stretchable spandex is convenient, and the price for this one was very reasonable. And as I’ve described, it’s effective, enough so that when we have a strict night we have employed it frequently.

I wasn’t sure what to expect when I bought this, but something about it appealed to me and made me think Joy would like it as well. My instinct appears to have been right.

Enjoy Yourself,

Jake

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Holiday Shopping Guide

It’s the time of year for holiday gift-giving! And doesn’t everybody need a couple of “special” gifts…the kind you don’t put under the tree, but give to your significant other privately, away from spying eyes? I’ve just posted the Leather Cuffs and Silken Bonds 2011 Holiday Shopping Guide (just in time for “black Friday”!). It’s a directory that lists the “best” BDSM products and merchants that Joy and I have uncovered during our many adventures over the years. Let’s face it–much of the merchandise available for BDSM play doesn’t live up to it’s marketing hype. The products we include, however, have been thoroughly tested in Jake’s combination playroom/evil laboratory, and have received both Joy’s “Multiple Orgasm Award” and the Leather Cuffs and Silken Bonds stamp of approval.

The guide is broken out into categories. Each listing points to a review of a product and a link to a location where you can purchase it. I’ve also tried to indicate which items are most suitable for beginners just starting out on their BDSM journey. If you are new to this “hobby” and still assembling your selection of tools and accoutrements, the guide provides an easy way to select items that work well, are built to last, and will help you and your partner successfully explore the many paths of BDSM.

I’ve only listed the “best” products we’ve found. If you don’t see a listing for a particular category of toy or tool, it’s because we haven’t yet found one that lives up to our standards (Joy is pretty exacting, let me tell you!). To check out our thoughts on options that didn’t make the cut for “best” products, you can see the complete list of BDSM Product Reviews. Full disclosure–Leather Cuffs and Silken Bonds has an affiliate relationship with some (not all) of the merchants we list on this site. We try, however, not to let that influence our reviews.

One of the best things about shopping for “special” gifts is that it’s so much fun to browse. Hope this guide proves both useful and entertaining!

Enjoy yourself, and happy holidays!

Jake

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