The Cocktail Bar

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Music Playing: The Quirinelles singing I'm Through With You

Dateline: Friday, May 2nd, 1952

Blondes Together

Why, Margy, darling...I'm so excited to discover that my first acquaintance in this establishment shares my enthusiasm for stockings...and is a blonde on top of it all! I am also a blonde, and I love peaches and lavenders and blues and...well, just about everything that makes me look and feel delicate and beautiful.

It seems as if you must enjoy lingerie as much as I do. Is this true? I love the feel of soft, silky undergarments and the slip and slide of a pretty pair of stockings when I cross my legs has no equal. I feel so feminine whenever I'm decked out in my softest and frilliest underneath my more...well...conservative attire.

Darling Margy...had I thought of it in advance, I would have brought my own, but since I never expected to meet someone of your considerable charm...

Barpette...come here a moment, would you? I say...could I give this lovely rose on the table to my new friend? I will be happy to replace it later...Yes? Oh...thank you...and, by the way...can I have a martini please...and don't forget to bring Margy whatever she wants, OK?

Margy...a token of my new friendship...I hope that I can do better next time...

MICHELLE


Flowing and Silky

Brushed silk is a bit too expensive for me for the moment,but I sure know the cool ,clean feeling of movement in it.When I was 7 my mommy bought me pajamas of brushed silk.That's all I got for Christmas that year. I lived in those pajamas.I had to stop wearing them when they literally fell apart,nearly 2 years. Yes, it's throwing money away, buying poor quality. My brunette side needs a good talking to about quality and quantity.My blonde side knows what I should get.I'm really glad you brought that up.I'm going to concentrate on the specialty shops around town and leave the giant department stores alone. Gosh maybe that's what it is all about, a return to innocence.My brunette side sure is mean though!I I've lived so long in cotton I've nearly forgotten the glistening effect of a brushed silk top and pajammy legs! Thank you Elizabeth Ruth.

ESPIRENZA


Curious

Hello Michelle, thanks for the invite.

I'm a bit-curious about meeting the pettes here. Are you a blonde persona or a brunette? I'm looking for a friend to share my thoughts with. Can you keep a secret? Let me know.

Curious

MARGY


Dateline:Thursday, May 1st, 1952.

A Mystery Solved

Ah, look over there, what a pretty sight! Our two newies, Christine and Espirenza, heads together in conversation.

Christine, how I knew you were here is no mystery. I saw your letter to the Elektrapette, and I figured you might be around the Cocktail Bar, in the shadows... I lurked for months before I got up the nerve to say anything, you see, so I know how it is. You are very welcome, m'dear, and I hope you enjoy the company here.

Espirenza, I have to tell you, your choice of styles (silky and flowing) is my personal favourite. Do you have anything in brushed silk? Gorgeous rich colours, durable, feels like cool liquid against the skin...

Candida, I beleive I would like to buy you a drink, to celebrate our friendship. Imperial Fizz?

ELIZABETH RUTH


The Glory of Stockings

Dear Michelle, Yes, I would love to join you in the corner to discuss self-gartered stockings. They're my favorite of all lingerie. Self-gartered stockings give me a sense of freedom and liberty. The best set of self-gartered stockings I've owned are lacey and white.

My favorite colors to wear are peaches and whites. Although, because I'm a blonde I look best in red. But my personality reflects blues and whites.

MARGY


a New Frock

Hello again pettes! Let me tell you about my wonderful, wonderful find, because I am so excited. I am the very proud possessor of the most delightful and charming evening frock that you ever have seen me wearing. Look at it, girls. Black, Quirrie but in a Kadorian style, rather Frenchly sophisticated, don't you think? Notice the black and white sequins upon the neckline, and the way the material falls into folds. With black shoes and black bag, and this black evening bow in my hair, don't you think that I look splendid tonight? I am so thrilled with it. I look so sophisticated I can hardly recognise myself. Ah, the bliss of Quirinelle after the shortages of Kadoria!

CANDIDA


Dateline: Wednesday, April 30th, 1952

Hello!

Well thank you Candida for that ever so flattering compliment.You too have a charming and rather bubbly name.Much to suit your nature as I have read so far. And to Angelina the barpette,I propose a toast of roses and honeysuckle wine for being such a sweet and thoughtful proprietress.

Hi Christine,I'm glad to see I'm not the only shypette at the bar.I had a wonderful afternoon of shopping for new style foundations and loose fitting silky skirts and blouses.If you are new like me to all of this you will adore the feeling of inner support and outward flowing.Or maybe it's just me needing a change.Saturday I shop for heels.If any darling pette has a tip or a great place to shop tell me.New style clothing is a bit hard to find but not impossible.I hope to hear more from you Christine,and all the fair pettes that grace this wonderful Bar.

ESPIRENZA


Dateline: Tuesday, April 29th, 1952

New And Shy

Hello. I'm a bit shy, I've never written here before, but I wanted to say hello. Thank you for the drink, Elizabeth Ruth. How did you know I was here? I was really surprised to see you send me a drink the other day. I like Aristasia very much, what I know of it at least. So I'm here to learn from all of you more about it. I don't know anyone who lives near me who is interested in these things. I suppose that I've always felt a bit different from everyone I know, and a bit lonely because of it, because I never could be completely a part of what is called here the Pit. I had to stand apart from it because I couldn't believe in it. I used to look in house windows where the family was all sat around a television and think 'Why can't I be like them?' and feel shut out, but I couldn't be like them, I just wasn't. Yes, I learned to conform to what they thought as far as I could because feeling different all the time is complete misery, especially if you show it to them. But I hope to not feel alone any more now that I've found Aristasia, because now I know that I felt like that not because I was peculiar or odd, but because there really was something wrong with what surrounded me. I might not write much but I will be here a lot.

CHRISTINE


Dateline: Monday, April 28th, 1952

A Thought

Hello, Espirenza. It is very charming to make your acquaintance. What an utterly ravishing name!

Dear Elizabeth Ruth, I wonder if you have a blonde persona as well as your splendid brunette one.

But I don't know whether you possess one or not; after all, eagerness to show off one's new clothes to an admiring audience is common to both sexes!

Love

CANDIDA


More Whimsical Tales

'allo, I'm Emily Rose, just peeping in for a moment looking for Mary Margarete, who wanted to see my catalog of ivories and silks and such. So it's too bad that the Golden Age practice of wearing the Tokens given in love, or simply dropped as their own Fashions change, by our Grateful Animals, viz. the antlers, feathers, snake skins, and golden eggs, and such, and the honorably preserved pelts of our pets who have at their own natural times Gone Beyond, was, in some periods less Golden, used as excuse for some most unmentionably unfeminine industries.

Industry itself being, per se, rather unfeminine, in my opinion! But must go now, bye bye.

EMILY ROSE


A Penitent Blonde

Hello girls, it's me again. Oh, I really and truly am sorry this time. Well, do you remember that Marlene told me that I must not visit any more hat shops without her?

Well, when I went out with Millicent yesterday, we happened to see a glove shop, so I bought a few pairs . Not many, girls, oh, no, I have to think of my housekeeping budget and make sure that the figures add up at the end of the week. The trouble is, though, that when I've run out of fingers I have to write the figures down and then the numbers won't stay still while I try to add them. The number that I've had in my head runs away while I'm trying to add the next number to it. Do you other blondes have the same trouble? So they're added up but the sum is never right. I don't know why, sometimes the figures come out differently every time I add them up, so I think that they must run very quickly, don't you?

Oh, girls, you've guessed. No, Marlene thought that ten pairs of gloves were enough. For one season. So I am in deeper disgrace than ever!

JULIET


Dateline: Sunday, April 27th, 1952

A New Girl Says Hello

Hello pettes:

Been trying to introduce myself for a while.I guess the place has undergone some changes, as this is the first time I've been able to break through.A girl can learn a lot from fab Quirrie.I like the styles and smiles it creates.I'm not sure if I'm blonde or brunette yet.I tend to be bubbly, yet I watch the cash on hand.This is a nice place to sit back and mew and enjoy the girl I forgot. A round of everyone's favorites I declare.And a new pair of stockings to those who are bare,giggle.If I try I can be the girl I truly am by new thinking.Thanks for the opportunity to say Hi.

Love;

ESPIRENZA


Fashion

Michelle, how nice to meet you. Would you care to accept the offer of a cocktail? I too enjoyed Elizabeth Ruth's comments on stockings, and found them very interesting.

How glad I am that the whole mystery of toiles and fittings has been solved by Petal. Although it does sound rather complicated, I intend to have one made as then my clothes will fit as Real clothes should. Now I only need to find a girl who can knit to make one of those delightful patterns in the Elektrapette. I do not think that it is an art that I should ever excel in, as I have not sufficient patience. Perhaps I should tell Jennifer that she should learn to knit!

Poor Daffodil, are you sure that Patience is not a Free Thinker of some kind? Or a teetolar or something equally strange? How could she possibly think that a blonde could marry without a Church wedding and the presents of silver and china? Will she wish you to wear a sensible hat next? I should consider carefully the revelations afforded by her comments.

After all, a brunette may have a tendency towards the practical--but there are limits, are there not?

CANDIDA


Dateline: Saturday, April 26th, 1952

An Invitation

Margy, darling...I would be honored if you would join me over here in the corner...the conversation is coming so fast and furious that I'm losing my bearings...and I would so enjoy the pleasure of your company.

Did you hear Elizabeth Ruth's discussion about "Stocking Surprises?" My goodness...I just had to blush...but she's so right about that nearly erotic feeling that a good pair of hosiery can impart, but I wonder if she has ever heard of self-gartered stockings? You know...the kind with an elastic top that helps to hold them up? I LOVE them and wear them whenever I go out. Do you like to wear stockings and skirts? Everyone here seems to!

MICHELLE


A Whimsical Tale

Furs, oh dear oh dear? Someone has not heard that they are now being imported from Deliana, much better quality, and growing there on trees?

In Deliana you see Maid has been around a long time, and the local flora has had time to catch up. Just as the flowers make, er, flowers and nectar to attract the bees, so Delianaish plants make just the sort of treats that Maid likes to seek out and carry away with her.

Those lovely pussywillow capes with the catkin buttons (though they do eventually drop off to take root elsewhere) ... the snapdragon leather shoes (though the, er, birds and the bees aspect of shoes to dragons is I am afraid a little, er, well) ... must dig out my catalog....

Actually, there is a theory that the Mutability of Fashion is an old agreement between Maid and Flower, to assure that each season's garments will in fact somewhere be dropped ... literally on the ground, Flower hopes.

Must run now, dry your eyes, do not despair....

MARGARETE


More Perfect Fits

Well, Miss Petal, thank you for clearing up the mystery of toiles and pattern blocks. I'm a little relieved to know that I've been doing it the Right Way after all, and now I know that the proper name for what I call a test garment is a "toile" and what I think of as my Perfected Patterns are "pattern blocks."

However, I am dissapointed that there is no magical way to get a Perfect Fit, and it's still a lot of work. An Imperial Fizz, please, barpette, and one for Miss Petal here as well before she runs off to check Miss Fox's measurements (do you suppose that was a blonde double entendre?)

A friend travelling in China just brought me back six yards of the most lovely heavy silk crepe in a forest green, and I am dreaming of what to make of it.... I'm thinking of a kind of Kadorie suit with a mid-calf A-line skirt with a back slit, and a fitted hip length jacket of the sort that's supposed to be worn without a blouse underneath, and both done up the front with little buttons covered in silk satin of the identical green (only shiny, you see), and welt pockets with the welts in the same shiny forest green satin (and a slip underneath in the same satin...) The very thought of showing it to my friend will be enough to keep me happy all through the making of what I know know to be the toile! Do you suppose I am a secret blonde, unknown even to myself?

ELIZABETH RUTH


Dateline: Friday, April 25th, 1952

Courage and Dignity

Hello dears, Elizabeth Ruth again. Dear Daffodil, if you do not thinkit too forward of me, may I buy you a little something for consolationin your hour of uncertainty and distress? Seriously, even the bravestgirls (sometimes especially the bravest, I think) have dark days whenthey can't sleep or stop crying, but all those who suffer so mustremember that the sun will come out again eventually.

I read with interest Aunt Effie's advice in the latest ElektraPette,about being an Aristasian in the Pit, and her advice to "walk tall". Ithink that is extremely good advice and a good reminder to all of us. It's astonishing how much dignity can be regained in a difficultsituation just be drawing one's back and shoulders up straight, andlifting one's head. The Pit promotes slouching, leaning and drooping(not to mention making a cult of anguish, hostility and despair, whichcan easily be seen - indeed, hardly avoided - in Pit advertisements andentertainments). I often have to deal with people who have headaches andback pain (not to mention, anguish, hostility and despair) and it 'gets me down'. And then I notice that I really am down - back curved, chindown, eyes downcast - and I straighten up and lift my chin, and itsmazing how much better I feel. I'm not advocating a return towalking-with-a-book-on-your-head, or anything like that, but I do thinkwe immigrants to Aristasia can learn a lot about posture.

The other thing I've noticed is that it is much more graceful and easyand pleasant to resist the frenetic pace of the Pit would dictate. Idon't mean moving or walking slowly, exactly, but in an unrushed way, asthough time were not one's enemy. It's easier to stand and sit tallwhen one isn't lunging from place to place, too.

These are fairly superficial observations; perhaps our Sagette cancomment more profoundly on these topics (she usually can!)

You know, I've been spending more and more time in Amazonia (aetheriallyspeaking) and I think I'm going to move there (here). But I'll be intouch, never fear.

ELIZABETH RUTH


The Sagette herself is not in the Bar at the mome, only the Barpette. But you are right; the haste and speed of the Pit try to undermine femininity and grace by the lie that there is not enough time to do anything, even to walk, in a proper and dignified manner. All becomes subject to the tyranny of time, to the detriment of the consciousness of the Eternal, and of the bodily graces that reflect the Divine within the human frame. One could say that time devours all. Are not the provinces of Aristasia, which are not limited by time in the usual sense of the word, a most delightful corrective to that effect of the Pit? One could say that in Aristasia time is our servant, perhaps, and that we are less bound even by its most legitimate aspects.

A Real Treasure!

Oh Joy!

Just as Candida asked her question, you would not BELIEVE what luck came my way! The other campus of my workplace was cleaning out, and I obtained a stack of blocks and toiles and slopers (which I think are the same as blocks - I'm still working on it) and bits and pieces of sewing gear.

Now, a sloper is a very basic pattern for an item of clothing that has been created in a nice, firm card in one size only - preferrably yours. You use this to cut the pattern out in a bit of gingham or some unbleached calico (which I believe our American cousins call "muslin") with nice wide seam allowances. You sew this together, and try it on. Then, you get a friend who knows how to mark on it where you let the material out or take it in. This then becomes your toile. You make all the alterations you need on this, and when you have it perfect, you unpick it and use it as the basis for making your alterations to the sloper. This is now your very own, absolutely personalised pattern block. A basic pattern block for a fitted camisole can be the basis for a strapless evening gown, a ribbed high-necked skivvy (long-sleeved fine kniw material top) or - well - a fitted camisole.

But better than all, there was this dressmaker's model in the corner. Sad, dilapidated, definitely fraying at the edges - and therefore unsuitable for resale. And it just happens to be exactly my size on the top! (It's a little smaller than me on the bottom, but then, isn't that part of a girdle's job - to help with that little bit of softness that seems to accumulate where a woman has her curves?)

So I now have the slopers for a huge variety of sizes, and a set of toiles, which I can pin and mark and unpick to my little heart's content! Joy of Joys!

But best of all - this fashion section started in mid-Kadorian, so most of the slopers and all the fashion books and stuff are either Kadorian, Quirrinelle or Infra-Quirrie - or of such timeless and classic shape that they would not disgrace any era. (Although, of course, a really clever pette with an eye for this stuff can take a sloper and create the fashion of ANY era)

So ladies, I'm off to check my books for my dear Miss Fox's measurements, and my stash for that length of the divine Crepe de Chine, and my special box for that small but elegant length of lace - now where was that Kadorie picture?

Enough - I have to fly.

Toodles,

PETAL


Alone

Where may a visitor find a companion in Aprodite?

MARGY


Why, the Cocktail Bar is full of very companionable pettes. Do join in the conversation.

Wee Small Hours Philosophy

Mary Margarete here, a Georgia Mint Julep, please, thank you so much….!

3 a.m. philosophy? 'Beauty' as, well, er, Something good and Important? As the Absolute whatdidshecallit? Some sort of a cause of everything?And someone mentioned Feminine Mathematics? (Which maybe could be started from 'Euclid alone has looked on beauty bare', since with our nice well-connected brains [ as someone so well explained it in the Academy ] we have direct access to Beauty, and could even make Mathematics an experimental science with aesthetic effect as the proof of the pudding.)

But back to my point. If there could be Feminine Mathematics (more pretty diagrams on the blackboard and fewer Greek squiggles with unpronounceable punctuation), then could there be Feminine Philosophy too? Meaning, not just 'philosophy about femininity' but 'philosophizing done femininely'?

Now (still circling round my point), if Beauty (Bella Dea?) has Made Everything, is the Cosmic Artiste, then obviously She has used several mediums: sound, color, etc. And perhaps also plot and drama?

Then -just as each of us has a complexion etc that needs certain colors etc of clothing to suit it, and our clothing and hestia decor etc. should match, may we not each have a - well - Destiny of events, some sort of Script, for one's own life also?

And if aesthetics as Golden Mean and all that can be a guide to math, might aesthetics as Drama, Poetic Justice etc be a guide to discovering one's own Destiny Script?

And if so, shall we look to the poets for this, and the writers of novels of a certain sort of plot-aesthetic? Tho I can't, hip, just at the moment call to mind any names, but doubtless they're at the Fleems….

As well as, of course, seeking guidance in the patterns in the stars and the tea-leaves, and mayI have a cup of Duchess Grey please, verySTRONG?????

MARY MARGARETE


A new book, called The Feminine Universe, is being published very shortly. It addresses some of your questions.

Another New Face

What a wonderful place! I had a very dear friend recommend a visit herequite some time ago, but I only now found the time to stop by and have alook. She said that I would find it very congenial, and, I must saythat I am very intrigued, to say the least. I think that, if I may, Iwould like to sit here at the bar and have a look around. that is howit works here, isn't it? My goodness...so many lovely and excitingbrunettes...I already feel a little tingle of excitement...

MICHELLE


FUR AND FEMININITY

If Trentish lingerie is the ultimate in elegant feminine underwear, orundies, then there can be little doubt that the ultimate in feminineoutwear, or outies, is ... Trentish furs. Furs are sleek, sensuous,sometimes even frothy (in this sense, they may resemble ostrich plumes),but they cannot, of course, be worn next to the skin - so they arenecessarily worn to be seen, not unseen. They are worn not merelyfor warmth but for formal display (even in summer), an essential chord in afeminine ritual going back thousands and thousands of years.

Not even the finest plumes or the most perfect gemstones can compete withfurs for enshrining Maid at the pinnacle of Dea's creation: the soft andlustrous beauty of furs is surpassed only by Maid's own. Maid is mistressof all manifest creation, which Dea has placed at her feet and in her wisekeeping to perfect her femininity and to reign over all creatures. Furs areMaid's own maidservants in beauty, together with fine scents, flowers,feathers, seashells and jewels, the gossamer spinnings of the silkworm, thesoft, curly fleece of the lamb, the rich hues of berries and barks, thenacreous concretions of mollusks, the whale's ambergris....

Blather, you say? Very well, then, I'll turn over my trump card at theoutset so you can judge for yourselves. All argument, I think, will beinstantly quelled by this image of the imperial Loretta Young, dressed in aplain black wool suit with peplum jacket (quite like the one I showed youseveral months ago, worn by Miss Lucille Ball), overflowed by a prodigiouscascade of opulent red fox spilling from throat to hemline. The thicknessof the fox at the bodice conceals slit openings for pockets, while thejaunty red fox beret draws one's eyes to the centerpiece - to wit, MissYoung's exquisitely photogenic countenance, somehow always dreamilydetached from her surroundings, from this extravagant fur, from even timeitself. One senses instantly that Miss Young, were she to take the trouble,would consider this fur her feminine birthright - like her own peerlessfigure and perfect skin. (Do not overlook Miss Young's tiny, doll-likehand, either.) Here is yet another human image of a Goddess, not as rare asone might think - in Trent.

But meager words cannot begin to describe the surfeit of femininitybestowed by this fur on a woman already so amply endowed with feminineEssence that she would be perfectly feminine wearing nothing more than aflour sack. And because words cannot begin to describe what the image sovery plainly conveys to even the very dullest of girls, I shall leave off,show you no other images today - let you gaze at Miss Young as I have, forhours, if you like - and take up lesser furs another day when I shall have recovered myself.

ANITA, PARAMOUNT STUDIOS ARCHIVIST


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