Elanthian Vogue/Summer 5122 (Part II)

The official GemStone IV encyclopedia.
< Elanthian Vogue
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This is a creative work set in the world of Elanthia, attributed to its original author(s). It does not necessarily represent the official lore of GemStone IV.

Title: Elanthian Vogue: Summer 5122 (Part II)



Editor: Rohese Bayvel-Timbertree

Editor's Thoughts

"Spring is in the air, which means rain is too. My favorite rain protection is my trusty mop bucket, which fits nicely upon my head. But savvy adventurers will forego rain gear all together in favor of the free bath! Work smarter, not harder, is what I say." ~ Maylan

The "social season" is now in full swing and, if the first event is anything to go by, it is going to be one of the most exciting yet!

In this second of our planned three-part coverage, we continue to celebrate "The Season" by giving you the key dates, latest news, and plenty of fashion and social features. As always, we are excited to include more contributions from some of Elanthia's influential fashion and lifestyle icons, as well as hints and tips throughout this edition from the lovable Mop Girl, Maylan, whose alternative insight and input we continue to value!

We have a lot to offer the discerning eye too, including a look at the hats on display at Rolton Race Day and some tips on how to appreciate art at the season's Grand Art Exhibition next month. In addition, we focus on another aspect of high society attire. Gloves have made a frequent appearance in Elanthian Vogue, being the perfect accessory to many fashionable outfits, but they have never been in the spotlight. We plan to rectify that in this edition! Since hats have featured quite predominantly recently, it seems only right that gloves have their turn.

As always, don't forget to send us your comments on any of the articles in this month's publication or suggestions for future editions!


Rolton Race Day

"For Rolton Day Races, I like to blend in with the crowd. Wear your best rolton-pelted costume, and sneak into a race of your own! Mayhaps you'll even wear a fancy first place ribbon to add to your outfit." ~ Maylan

All eyes were on Veythorne Manor for the first event of the season. Rolton Race Day saw roltons and racegoers hoping to triumph on the track as well as competing in the style stakes. Hats were anticipated and Race Day was the perfect opportunity for magnificent millinery to be on display. Spectators were not disappointed!

As winner of the Mad Hat award, High Lady Treeva Ancalime Illistim sported a wide cerulean silk organza hat veiled in airy layers of platinum tulle. Worn at a rakish angle, it perfectly complemented her strapless cerulean blue flyrsilk gown interwoven with silver-wisped leaflets and lustrous high-heeled sandals.

To go with her pale silk gown caught by a jewel-feathered corset of sky blue feystone, Lady Traiva chose a combination of blue crystal hairpins and an elegantly slanted hat adorned with a caged trio of pale water sapphires, adding a classic double strand of pale white pearls to complete the look.

Corlyne Lancre's leaf-framed fascinator was topped with a flourish of gauzy monarch butterflies and, with its feathery viridian plume, Lady Starletdawn's jaunty ebon side-pinned hat caught the eye. The Nalfein socialite, Lady Uniana Le'Gondren teamed her wasp-waisted brown suede jacket, full-skirted indigo batiste gown over cerulean faille and coffee-hued underskirts with a striking russet-veiled mahogany suede hat accented with cobalt silk hellebore blossoms.

Lady of the Manor, Katara Stormwild, was a vision in organza and peridot green silk, topping her silver-ribboned gown with a wide-brimmed lace hat pinned with a tiny green peridot rose.

Not one to be outdone, Chatelaine Saesa Joiry boasted a large brim golden hat embroidered with tiny red roses and gold-shot sunset red silk gown with a rose-patterned lace overskirt.

With both a parasol and noteworthy hat, Missoni Sabretache made quite the entrance. Her curvy-brimmed sheer blue hat adorned with a silver-tipped glowbark thorn perfectly matched her misty grey velvet devore corset with glowbark panelling and heron-blue charmeuse gown with dramatically puffed sleeves.

Cousins, Elaejia and Aendir Silithyr did not disappoint either. Known for their Loenthran stylings, both appeared later in the day in fashionable form. Master Aendir's short-brimmed silk and velvet hat sported a soft black vulture pinion whilst the Silithyr Benefactress opted to not only remain hatless but to also allow her caramel-brushed blonde hair to cascade freely in a subtly gold-sheened curtain. With hair like that though, who could blame her!

Last, but by no means least, Melivn Ickput Faendryl pulled out all the stops with his Race Day look, sporting not only a rolton wool cloak buckled with leather stirrups, with matching sweater, pants and boots, but also an abundantly woolly hat formed into the shape of the creature’s head. His outfit certainly made a statement!

Art Appreciation

Unlocking the meaning behind a work of art is one of the many joys of viewing, collecting and displaying. But how do you appreciate art and interpret it? Often, there is a veneer of elitism surrounding art and creativity – be that painting, sculpting, or fashion designing - including the false idea that one must be "in-the-know" to truly appreciate it. Cairnfang Manor strives to remove this notion by making art in various forms available to everyone through their Grand Art Exhibit in Solhaven every year.

One way to open the doors to the art world is by learning how to actually look at artwork so our team have put together a few tips in the hope that you will feel more confident in attending this year's event. We strongly recommend you do!

Art can be many things; it can be an expression of emotions; it can represent a feeling or idea. Art can make statements or simply be aesthetically pleasing to the eye. Regardless of the type of art, artwork requires context in order to understand the meaning behind it. By examining a work of art, clues about its meaning can be gleaned from within the work itself. Looking at and comprehending art is all about taking the time to view, identify and think.

Viewing the art seems like an obvious first step, but it's more than quickly glancing at the art and drawing a conclusion. Before stepping back and taking the artwork in, take a moment to identify the artwork's basic qualities: is it a painting or a sculpture, is it on canvas or another medium, is it large or small, define its texture, observe whether the colours are bright or subdued, does it appear chaotic or organized. All of these are elements the artist chose when creating their piece, so they likely warrant consideration.

It is also valuable to consider whether a different vantage point changes the artwork. This was evident in our own Editor-in-Chief's prized piece exhibited in 5120, created in honour of this publication.

a twist of metal and lace
Standing at just twelve inches tall, the sculpture is puzzling in its construction yet somehow draws the eye around its many twists and curlicues. At first glance, it appears to be nothing more than a tangle of steel wire and ivory lace but, when viewed from certain angles, it transforms into the curvaceous form of a woman bedecked in a pallid gown and captured in various aesthetic poses. With a full tilt of the head, however, the visage of a male appears with a mass of wiry curls about his pale face. There appears to be something written on it. In the Common language, it reads: "Vogue" -- by Rohese Bayvel-Timsh'l

Aside from the visual elements, knowing when or how the artwork was made reveals more context. In all cases, learning something about the artist undeniably adds to the appreciation of their artwork.

Use what you have observed so far to think about meanings and narratives the artwork could have. The title of the piece is a good starting point. Consider what the subjects or symbols might have meant to the artist when they created the artwork. What do the colours say about the artist, and how do they apply to the subjects in the art? Ask yourself, how does the art make you feel. Many artists have specific meanings behind their art, but also encourage viewers to come up with their own interpretations. In this way, there is no "right" answer that must be reached to unlock the painting’s mysteries. Still, every interpretation is not automatically correct, which is why our tips can be helpful in finding clues. It is surprising how much of what you already know lends itself to understanding a work of art, so asking questions such as "who," "what," "how," etc. may lead to great insights.

Applying these techniques to every work of art you come across may seem daunting, but just remember one important fact: You don't have to look at everything. The idea of applying these tips to everything on display is like going to a tavern and drinking every drink on the menu in one sitting. Doing so will probably leave you feeling a little overwhelmed and giddy. Instead, find what you like and enjoy it, and know that if you want to try something different, you can! Keeping an open mind is always encouraged so don’t be afraid to stop and observe something outside of your tastes.

Doors open on the evening of the 4th day of Ivastaen and the exhibit will be open for public viewing for a full week. Whilst Maylan may not be in attendance, many of Elanthian society will be so come and join them!

"Miss Rohese asked for my take on High Society events. The only such one I attend is the annual Shanty Town Barn Hoedown. I aim to not be wearing any clothes at all by the end of that shindig, so I suppose you should just go on and wear whatever you want to it." ~ Maylan

Traiva Verethundi

Traiva greets me warmly at the gate leading into House Paupers.

You see Chatelaine Traiva Verethundi the Spiritweaver. She appears to be an Aelotoi of the Mrae'ni Clan. She is petite in stature and has an hourglass figure. She appears to be in the prime of life. She has smoldering, viridian-flecked dark hazel eyes and rose-tinted ivory skin. She has hip length, softly curled deep cordovan hair held in a loose chignon by some delicate blue crystal hairpins. She has a heart-shaped face and high cheekbones. She has glossy dark claret lacquer brushed onto her sleekly ovate fingernails. She has a pair of jade-veined elongated emerald wings. She has a pair of teardrop sapphire earrings in the ridges of both her ears, and a knotwork and dragonfly tattoo on her neck. She is wearing a princess-cut blue sapphire necklace, a double wrapped wool stomacher over a square-necked sapphire wool bliaut with pewter-hued velvet bands binding the floor-length sleeves, an emerald-set gold wedding ring, and some elegant midnight blue chopines with braided silk laces.

With a cheery wave to the doorkeeper, she leads me into the grounds and under the awning to the massive doors leading inside. We continue through the peaceful hall into to the courtyard beyond, with its bubbling fountain, and settle along its edge under the shade of an apple tree. With the excuse of wanting it for my horse, I help myself to one of the ripe fruits and proceed to ask Traiva to tell me a little about herself and the House.

Traiva's voice lilts into slightly accented Common.

"I joined Paupers not too long after I came to the Landing to study, drawn in by an acquaintance who showed me the grandeur of the grounds that creates a bit of an oxymoron of the name. At the time, being hesitant to commit to much of anything but my studies, I appreciated that Paupers asked so little of its members in exchange for so much. Eventually I became more involved, ultimately stepping into the role of Chatelaine to lead along with the Warden and Bartender."

Traiva pauses as a trio of gnome minstrels stroll into the courtyard then beeline for the apple tree. Quickly, one gnome scales his companions, and, perched upon their shoulders, he plucks three dappled yellow apples. With an acrobatic flip, the gnome dismounts and throws an apple at each of his fellows. The trio wanders off, apples in hand. Traiva gives a slight mirthful giggle, her eyes sparkling, and returns her attention to me.

"Chatelaine of Paupers, which I often describe as being the Keeper of Keys and Herder of Cats, seems to be one of the first things people know about me. Hopefully, as years go by, they will also see me as a founder of the Revelia Carnivale arts festival. Longtime Elanthian Vogue readers also should remember that I work alongside Tolwynn in service to Ivas, following her calling outside the walls of established temples. If there is anything else I am to be remembered for, it is as a devoted student of Empathic and Healing arts and a keeper of Aelotian history and culture."

A loud "Ribbit" echoes from within a riverstone fountain. Glancing over, I notice a large bullfrog sitting contently upon a pile of coins just beneath the water's surface. For some strange reason, this prompts me to ask Traiva about Revelia Carnivale at which Traiva claps her hands in delight and her face lights up.

"When Argent Aspis announced that the 25th Bardfest would be the last, at least for a while, my brain immediately went to work. Bardfest was easily my favorite time of the year, and I loved being a part of it, either as a performer-competitor or as a judge; just the announcement started to leave a giant hole within me. I started thinking: How could I take the best parts of it, and make it better? As I was thinking and starting to sketch out plans, I heard that others felt the same way. So, I did what would best benefit everyone, and began to reach out, letting others know that I wanted to see an arts festival and would happily work with anyone else with a similar vision. I had the joy to bounce around ideas with Seomanthe of Aspis and Katara of Silvergate, with some input from Xanthium of Brigatta, Katiesa of Arcane Masters, and you. We brainstormed like crazy - what could work, what WOULD work, how do we bring so many wonderful ideas into a beautiful and coherent vision."

Traiva remains animated as she continues.

"Revelia Carnivale, born of a myth (of Katara's wildly colorful imagination), brings the spirit of Revelia and its inhabitants to the Landing. Revelia worships the twins of art, Cholen and Jastev, and Cholen's protege Tilamaire; as such, it is only fitting to have a festival in their honor and celebration at the height of the summer season and Cholen's Eve. Our inaugural year was a wonderful success, much more than we expected, and we have plans to repeat many of the events. Two of the highlights are personal favorites of mine: the Carnivale Concert, to showcase performers of all types, and the Topsy-Turvy Masque, celebrating Cholen's spirit of dressing in all manner of expression."
"With the Solhaven Grand Art Exhibit only two months prior to Revelia Carnivale, I am very hopeful that Cairnfang Manor will be able to display some of the visual art pieces they bring forth from our artists, and I have been in talks to have people host a seminar and demonstration on weaving arts; I have been so delighted with the materials from the recent festival in Yuvi Qorit and new yarns in Bloodriven Village. And, of course, I know that Elanthian Elegance will have a wonderful tie-in for Elanthian Fashion Week."

A small silver cart with a teapot and two cups has appeared, quietly brought in by one of the maids that keep Paupers' bars well-stocked. Traiva pauses to pour a cup of tea, the faint smell of delicate rose wafting through the air as she offers it to me before pouring a cup for herself and taking a long sip as my next question is posed to her: that of her thoughts on the “season” in general and how important she thinks such events are to the people of Elanthia.

Traiva's merry laughter rings through the courtyard.

"I love the season, all the seasons. The spring and summer events season feels especially refreshing as many of us emerge from the cold of winter, enjoying the longer days and warmer nights. This is the time for the garden parties, fishing all afternoon, dancing under the stars without freezing."

She pauses before letting out a contemplative breath.

"Life is not easy, and there are dangers all around. These events are celebrations. Not just the big ones, like Revelia Carnivale or the journey to Rumor Woods, but the smaller parties. We are honoring life by living it, reveling in it, toasting each other and that we are still here with so much yet to enjoy."

Traiva is thoughtful as she begins her answer to my next question. I am interested in her thoughts on fashion and how it fits with the "Season."

"There is a joy in dressing the part, it adds a little something extra. And it helps with the immersion into the event. I am not one much for wearing a hat myself, but seeing them at a race, and certainly being dressed up for the occasion, gives the event a more celebratory air, that it is something out of the ordinary. Or to dress for riding while jousting at Rumor Woods - seeing the riding boots and coats made to move while on the horse reminds everyone why they are there."
"It is so refreshing to see people out of their armor and everyday garb to get in the moment of the event. Their attitude changes, there is a change to mannerisms. I have seen some who seldom dress up put on finery for a ball, and there is a slight shift in how they move, how others move with them."

Traiva takes another thoughtful pause.

"The Season is rather like one of the canvases of life, and fashion is the paint we put to it. It can be smooth or rough, complement the scene or be a blank space. I take a joy in adding my harmonious brushstroke and seeing the strokes others add to the scene."

Katara Stormwild

Located on Sylvar Wey in Ta'Illistim is Stormwild Manor. Katara greets me graciously on the flower-filled patio with fresh lemonade and an apology for her attire as she has just returned from her morning ride.

You see Lady of Manor Katara Stormwild the Archmage. She appears to be a Sylvankind. She appears to be very young. She has long-lashed, haunting gold-flecked emerald green eyes and silky, faintly blushed lily white skin. She has long, lustrous golden blonde hair tucked under a tall dark red silk hat wrapped with a black netted veil, in a rose-shaped side chignon. She has a delicate face, a button nose and gracefully arched, upswept ears that end in delicately tapered points. She has a petite figure with a subtle, hourglass shape. She has full, lush, naturally red lips. A perfect scarlet despanal is positioned between her eyes, which casts a sparkling gold sheen across her face. She has a row of tiny bejeweled butterflies set along the slender tips of her pointed ears. She is holding a tiny sharp-eared puppy covered by a cloud of fluffy white fur in her right hand. She is wearing a tailored dark red riding jacket pinned with a ruby Lady of Manor insignia, a rose diamond-dusted pomander, a dark red elven-dart bodice with a chiffon shawl collar, some corset-style leathers with curvaceous bodice contours, a crystalline handheld pylon, some dark red leather riding gloves embossed with a small crest, a diamond-set platinum signet ring, a delicate crystalline chatelaine, an exquisite hand-painted case, a long dark red riding skirt with black linen underskirts, and a pair of dark red leather riding boots buttoned with ruby roses. Vibrant rosevines spring around her feet, dissipating into colorful mist as she moves.

She begins by telling me how she became involved with the Silvergate Inn.

"I feel like I was born at Silvergate. My adopted mother, Mistyrose, brought me to the inn as a babe and Lord Enegue was a friend and uncle type of influence in my life. When he tapped me to join the officers of Silvergate I started out as the Inn's concierge, a very interesting job I tell you. A few years later, when Enegue decided to take a step back from the day to day and appointed Dianatrue as Regent, she enlisted my help with bigger projects. In fact, I was the one who created the Silvergate Winter Fashion Gala. The Gala also has the distinction of that infamous year where the one known as Plur did his notorious diaper dance; it was a hilarity and a tragedy at the same time!"
"A few years after being in the hierarchy of the Silvergate officers, Dianatrue and her husband, Kentrue, great friends, decided to retire to lands far off. It was at this time that I became the Inn's Regent. And sadly, when Enegue became ill and knew his time with us was limited, he asked that I continue the work of running the inn. Since then, I have tried my best to honor his trust and his memory. I am everything from Lady of the Manor to chief bottle washer! I do have a fantastic team of officers that I rely heavily on and they have never let me down. They are what make Silvergate and I owe them my undying gratitude."

A refill to my glass of lemonade is proffered as I ask about Revelia Carnivale and I gladly accept; it really is delicious!

"The brainchild of Lady Traiva who enlisted myself and Lady Seomanthe. Our first year with Revelia was an unmitigated success! We are extremely proud of the outcome and hope to outdo ourselves this year. We still have much planning to do but I can share with you that we shall reprise our opening parade with a fun raffle to follow. There shall be much merriment, liquor and scandal to be had I am sure!"

Moving swiftly on to her thoughts of the "Season" and fashion.

"Oh the "Season" is such great fun. How many mothers have dressed up their daughters and pushed them into the ballrooms to snag the eye of a well-to-do mage or cleric? But the Season is not just about mingling for romance but so much more! The events that open our new Season are so very important for connection to each other, for comradery and to break the cycle of just seeking fame and fortune. One must live! Life is a feast and most poor adventurers are starving!"
"One must have color and tradition and excitement! So much of that is brought to the forefront with fashion! The hats at Race Day for example, where else can one be so dramatic and stylish at the same time? The merriment of Revelia Carnivale and the little one is often seen in during the festival and of course, the elegance of the gowns and tailored suits we see in our ballrooms. Fashion tells so much of who we are and how we honor our traditions. The marvel of it all never stops to engage me and the creativity is so often breathtaking. I am always excited as the Season begins!"

Jaysehn Ranshai

"Adventuring on the Open Seas is a treasure trove of free clothes! When the captain isn't looking, grab a sail and sew yourself a gown. You'll look so purdy! Accessorize with whatever you happen to fish out of the sea: muck, seaweed, mermaid hair...whatever, it's all free." ~ Maylan

Commodore Jaysehn Ranshai welcomes me aboard his frigate and leads me into the well-appointed Captain's Quarters. Named Onyx Eclipse, he explains that the frigate is his flagship so I ask him to tell me how he came to be involved with ships in the first place.

"Well...that is quite a story. I suppose my first experience with ships was actually in my days of learning at the Academy. One of the responsibilities of the students there was to lead patrols in nearby provinces to suppress lawlessness and brigandry. In a place we call 'the Riverlands', patrols are done on small, two-man craft that are powered by compact triangular sails driven onward by the constant breezes of the region. We call these little vessels 'Zephyrs'. My first ever time on a nautical craft of any kind were those Zephyrs. I saw my first fighting in my youth on them as well."
"Years later, I would finally venture on the oceans when I paid a smuggler vessel to take from my home to the lands of famed 'Jontara'. After a long journey with those cutthroats, I was left in the port of Ta'Loenthra from which my story here began. I would make a return journey to my home over a decade after that to...settle outstanding matters. I returned to Jontara two years ago, and quickly began to invest in a new fleet with the intent of carrying on the work of my Order. Now, the Sentinel Fleet includes four ships, crewed by Caligosi refugees who support our efforts in the open seas."

With my mind on the summer regatta, I ask him for his thoughts on the "Season" and nautical events in particular.

"I think it is necessary for any culture, anywhere, to find things that glue them together to one another. So many of us are drawn towards one thing or the next, openly dismissing the beloved places and people of those around them. In truth, I've found that most people, from the Ancients to humans like myself, are largely the same. On a ship, we are all subject to the wind, the storm and the wave. We all can take a patient joy in the slow approach to a port just peeking over the horizon. And we can all thrill at a wild combat against fierce foes in a raging squall. I believe the oceans can glue together what the land has driven apart."

I can't resist asking him about fashion next and he takes my teasing with good humour.

"I think I've made little secret of the fondness I have for a particular hat. But it’s more than just a hat. I call to mind that I was recently gifted a lovely artifact of old Ashrim, for which I have a great fondness. It was coat, long since fallen into the age of disrepair. Yet it was once worn by an Ashrim captain of old. I could imagine such a person, commanding the ship's helm with presence and purpose, uniting the crew in a singular purpose. Making a vast and complex thing like a ship respond under his watchful eye and clear commands like a well-trained destrier."
"As a commander of a ship, my job is to provide that same inspiration to the crew. A coat of brass buttons over aubergine suede or a flowing sash of golden sheened elesine may not seem like much at first. But they help the crew rally around the presence of their captain. Just as the sea can glue people together in common cause, the commander must glue the crew together as well. They must be confident in his leadership and trust in his commands."
"Just as an elegant lady can command the stares of a ballroom in a beautiful gown, a properly attired captain can draw the eyes and ears of the crew when they are most dearly needed. I think there is a certain romanticism with the image of the confident sea captain, standing tall against the forces of nature that must certainly dwarf him in scale and scope. I think it wouldn't take very much for the Social Season to capture that romantic image and…with a little leverage, a bit of cannonfire and some fair winds...help bind together the people around us like fresh oakum."

I look forward to Jaysehn welcoming me aboard again for the festivities during the regatta.

The Gloves Are On!

Although many people would view gloves as nothing more than a covering to keep the hands warm or protected, they also play a role in the fashion stakes too. Gloves add grace and elegance to any outfit. They are connected to the notion of the "perfect hand" – shaped, fine, pale, tapered – and, much like a fan, are often seen as social markers. In some ways, they can be worn in a particular way or at a specific moment as a symbolic gesture and, failing to do so could be seen as an insult or criticism in high society circles.

Short gloves or gauntlets tend to be favoured during the daytime to keep hands protected for such pursuits as horse riding, training hawks or hunting. Fine leather, and the expensive silk or gold thread used to stitch them, mark out gloves worn more for a fashion statement than functionality.

The shift towards softer materials such as silk, satin, cotton, and velvet is usually noticeable at Court and other social events with ladies opting for longer gloves to maintain modesty.

If one were to follow the stricter requirements of etiquette, gloves are not worn in the home, for example, when hosting tea or dinner. On the contrary, it is considered inappropriate for a lady to go outside without her gloves on, as ungloved hands are sometimes associated with nudity and it is imperative to never dance without gloves.

In the same way as fans can be used to convey messages in Nalfein circles, glove etiquette can also be used to express untold feelings, whether positive or negative, in a discrete and tactful way.

The following is an interpretation and analysis of the glove language by one of our top designers, Velique.

Glove Flirtations
Gesture Meaning
Holding with tips downward I wish to be acquainted
Twirling around the fingers Be careful, we are watched
Right hand with the naked thumb exposed Kiss me
Left hand with the naked thumb exposed Do you love me?
Using them as a fan Introduce me to your company
Smoothing them out gently I wish I were with you
Holding them loose in the left hand I am satisfied
Holding them loose in the right hand Be contented
Biting the tips I wish to be rid of you very soon
Folding them up carefully Get rid of your company
Striking them over the hand I am displeased
Drawing halfway on left hand Indifference
Clenching them in right hand No
Striking them over the shoulder Follow me
Tossing them up gently I am engaged
Turning them inside out I hate you
Dropping both of them I love you
Tapping the chin I love another
Putting them away I am vexed
Dropping one of them Yes

Gloves are both an empowering and enslaving device. Accordingly, wearing the appropriate gloves are a way to display your place in society; wearing gloves appropriately are a way to show how you feel about that! So think carefully about your gloved actions the next time you are at Court.

Speaking of Court, we share a final word from Maylan!

"For tea with the Mirror, wear your biggest pockets. That way you can stuff them full of pastries when she's not looking! Snacks for days, snacks for days!" ~ Maylan