Last night, the 2012 Victoria's Secret Fashion Show was held in New York, and it was a delightfully absurd smorgasbord of flesh, wings, and lingerie. One of the most shocking get-ups? Twenty-year-old Karlie Kloss in "Native" garb.
Even though it's been said time and time again that this is NOT COOL, even though No Doubt just pulled their video in which Gwen Stefani wears a war bonnet, even though the common consensus is when it doubt, leave it out — Karlie Kloss wore this get up on stage. A culture is not a costume, or a trend, and as Adrienne from Native Appropriations puts it, "playing Indian still relegates Native peoples to stereotypical character tropes… our Nation has created a narrative in which blackface=racist, while redface=normal." And:
Blackface=dressing up in a stereotypical costume of a race that is not your own, drawing upon a history of racism and inequality. Playing Indian=dressing up in a stereotypical costume of a race that is not your own, drawing upon a history of racism and inequality. Clear enough for you?
Bottom line: THIS IS RACIST.
Will Victoria's Secret keep this outfit in the actual fashion show when it airs December 4? We'll see!
Aside from the war bonnet, many of the outfits just seemed to be about feathers. And how pretty they are.
Snow Angel of Death.
Saphhire angel, or something.
There was a rococo/baroque/bustle-and-corset segment of the program.
The illusion mesh torso stuff is quite hideous.
More feathers! Never enough feathers.
That Theda Bara/art deco number on the end needs to teleport itself into my closet ASAP.
One portion of the show featured the models dressed as flowers. But not in a cool, Georgia O'Keefe way. More in a Rose Bowl float way.
Orchids and lilies and poppies and irises and something that looks like a butterfly made from slices of dragonfruit!
Insert your own "secret garden" joke here.
How does your garden grow?
It would be great if I had a joke about pruning sheers.
But alas, I do not.
Moving on! Then there was a rigamarole where the models were dressed up inspired by months of the year. Examples: January (New Year's), August, and December.
April Showers. May Day.
September? I think? I mean, that's what September means to me. A cheerleader with pompom wings.
Some of the most elaborate costumes were in the Circus part of the show. For instance: Clowns with balloons. Because there's nothing sexier than a clown. With balloons. Next time you see a clown, think lingerie. See what happens.
Here's Karlie Kloss, as the knife thrower's assistant, who will throw those knives right back at ya.
What you're looking at right now is a woman dressed as a pink poodle jumping through a hoop. We all make choices!
They made a big to-do about this a four-foot diamond back python made of colored Swarovski crystals and vintage crystals. It looks like shit.
Not impressed by your snake, madam. Apologies.
Adriana Lima, ringleader.
Joan Smalls: Tiger, jumping through fiery hoops.
I'll admit it, I like this one. Liu Wen as the Illustrated Woman, awesome.
Another concept in this fashion show was "toy box." Brace yourself, because this has never happened, in the history of womankind: It's a lady dressed as a sexy cat! Groundbreaking.
Maud Welzen, paper doll.
Jacquelyn Jablonski as a toy Soldier.
Jourdan Dunn, robot.
Tinker toys? Sexy!
A woman needs a velour hoodie like a fish needs a bicycle.
Sock monkey, cowgirl, and whatever that other thing is.
Judging by these shots — and the ones on her instagram — Rihanna had a really good time.
Where have you been all my li-aye-aye-aye-aye?
Costume change! Pearls, girls.
Justin Bieber, possibly inside a pinball machine.
I love my boyfriend Bruno Mars, I don't care how short he is.
Fuck yeah, America. What a glorious use of dollars and ingenuity. USA. USA.
Images via Getty.