Elanthian Vogue: Fashanos 5119

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This Month's Edition

Editor: The Editorial Team in the absence of Rohese Bayvel-Timsh'l

Contributions from:
Picae Pevensey
Ordim

Editor's Thoughts

The publication of our second edition this year happens to fall just before the Day of Voaris and Laethe, the Elanthian day of love, so it’s only fitting that we turn the spotlight on romance. What better way to begin than to take a closer look at what love actually means.

So, you've found the Elf or Dwarf of your dreams; your eyes met across a crowded room and you’ve summoned up the courage to ask them out on a date. Now what? The Editorial Team of Elanthian Vogue is here to help! We’ve toured the lands and come up with some suggestions of wonderful places to spend some quality time together. But what to wear? Don’t worry, we have that covered too; we’ve included some styling tips to help you dress for any romantic occasion.

With the location decided upon and your outfit picked out, you’re all set, except for that final flourish ... flowers, but be careful which you choose! Our in-house expert shares a few pointers on how to impress the potential love of your life with a simple bloom and avoid a floral faux pas.

Finally, in the true spirit of the occasion, we have a delightful love story to share. We hope you enjoy it as much as we did and we would love to hear about your "true love". Send us your stories, wedding memories, or even experiences of heartbreak and separation and we will endeavor to publish them in future editions.

Editorial Team

Love is in the Air!

(An insight into the true meaning of love by Picae Pevensey, an empathic worshipper of Oleani)

"Only through love can we truly come closer to the Gods."

Love is a four-letter-word that gets tossed around to describe just about anything. “I love your shoes!” “I love wine!” “I’d love to go hunting with you sometime.” But what about when it comes to relationships? What does it really mean to love someone?

I am by no means an expert on the subject; I’ve had my heart broken and learned a few things along the way that have given me an insight into what it means to be in love. More importantly, I’ve learned that love is an immeasurable force that can’t be reckoned with; you can’t force it.

Love means accepting another person in the strongest way possible. It means supporting them in anything and everything, even when you may not agree on the situation.

Love means not looking for something better or seeing what’s out there. It means committing to that person because you know they complete you in every way. It doesn’t mean trying to be a replica of another person, but rather being like a puzzle piece that fits perfectly with the other. Your traits complement each other to create better versions of you both.

Love means going out to get coffee and pancakes for breakfast, just to show you care. It means going out of your way to make them smile and, without even thinking about it, dropping everything for them in those times when smiles just won’t do.

Love means yelling sometimes. It means caring so much about that other person that you can’t help but become furious when your relationship is called into question. It means fighting to get it back.

Love means smiling for reason no at all, and giggling from the tickle of butterflies in your stomach every time your eyes meet.

Love means not needing constant attention, in person, via Whispering Willow or an accompanying familiar, to feel secure. It means trusting them in every way possible and earning their reciprocal trust in you.

Love means loving yourself, too. It means always being your true self and never changing to fit another person’s ideals. It means sleeping soundly at night knowing that someone else is accepting of your imperfections.

Love means gazing into their eyes for hours and it only feeling like minutes. It means breathing softly when you’re in their arms and becoming one with their heartbeat when your head is pressed up to their chest.

Love means giving in to an awesome power that brings two people together in the craziest ways. It means waiting, sometimes for a long time, for the stars to align. It means persevering through horrible dates and dull chats in the Town Square until you get your turn. It means surrendering control to a greater force and staying along for the ride.

Sometimes love means disappointment. It means broken hearts and tears. It means letting go, giving in, taking a chance and being let down. It means learning the hard way that you can’t make someone love you.

Love, although it may fade, never gives up on you. Love that leaves is not lost; it will find you again someday, perhaps when you least expect it or maybe when you really want it to. But, once it finds you, it is worth every fleeting moment of highs and lows.

Romantic Hotspots

The twins, Voaris and Laethe are both patrons of young love. Where Voaris watches over those whose love is forbidden, Laethe watches over those whose love is lost. The Hall of the Lovers in Icemule Trace houses a pair of willow altars to honor both brothers and it serves as a perfect location for a secluded liaison – be sure to bring a couple of roses as a blessing to the orphans. If you can tear your eyes away from each other, take a moment to also admire the surrounding panels of stained glass.

If an activity-filled day is more your style then perhaps Veythorne Manor would be more suitable. Located in Ta'Illistim, the extensive grounds offer a few games of chance, such as Blackjack, an archery contest, or a thrown weapon contest. The private residence of Lord Vothurre Veythorne also boasts a beautiful garden with a perfect picnic spot, a magnificent glowbark tree, and an abundance of souvenir foliage. There is also a dock where one can fish and a delightful Inn offering a selection of delicious food and drink. Just be aware that the estate is closed off to all but elves and citizens of the Shining City on the weekends, so plan accordingly.

A less formal option is the Solindago Anox zoo: lions and tigers and bears, oh my! What better way to spend an afternoon than in the company of splendid specimens of the animal kingdom; both small and large. From a fuzzy baby rolton to an impressive silver-backed gorilla, the zoo has something for everyone – even an aptly rose-scented picnic area and gift shop stocked with a range of trinkets and toys!

For those in need of something a little more cultured, a visit to the River's Rest Museum might be in order. The museum houses an eclectic collection of fascinating exhibits, all displayed for ease of examination and clearly labelled with historic documentation. The tour is both enjoyable and informative, especially if you are in the company of a Bard.

Our last recommendation is the small town of Ravelin in the Elven Nations. Located on the Mistydeep River, the Ravelin was built to service the fortress of Ta'Vaalor as a commercial base and recreational area. With a relaxed atmosphere, a couple can enjoy a quiet drink or two in Lilly’s Tavern and a lazy afternoon in a fishing boat on the river. Pop in and see Erulk, in the little shop on the dock and he will sort out all your fishing tackle and bait.

These are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to perfect venues for a first date or a romantic day out. There are myriad interesting places to spend quality time together but if we told you where they all were, they wouldn’t be special anymore, now would they!

As Seen In ...

(Editorial insight into the romantic stylings of the Elven court.)
In the mood for some romance? Why not extend that to your wardrobe. With spring approaching and the Day of Voaris and Laethe around the corner, it’s the ideal time to experiment with little hints of lace, pastel palettes and delicate airy fabrics. We have 5 ways to help you pull off a playful or flirtatious style.

When in doubt, opt for pastel – the simplest way to channel a romantic vibe. Look for color palettes in light blue, soft pink, cream, dusty rose and lavender. Add in some flare - whether that’s in a hemline, collar or cuffs – and pair it with floral statement jewelry pieces and strappy sandals or boots in neutral tones. Keep it light and breezy.

It’s all in the details. Delicate embroidery is a dead giveaway that you’re entering romantic territory. Embellishments along hemlines add dimension to an outfit but, in this case, be sure to keep accessories simple, like a gold bangle or buckle.

Aim for flattering silhouettes. Embrace your inner hopeless romantic with shapes that flatter your figure – like high waists, tiered skirts, or tucked in shirts and blouses. Try bows or bustles to accentuate your curves, and ruffles or plunging necklines to emphasize your face.

Bring on the lace. There is nothing more alluring (yet surprisingly demure) about a lace dress or lace-trimmed shirt cuffs. Keep the look neat and fitted above the waist but be bold with full skirts or wide-legged pants for a flouncy finish. Again, aim for neutral shoes and a pop of color with a bright bag.

Don’t be afraid to play with texture. With all the intricate details of the romantic style, feel free to mix and match textures - it is still Fashanos, after all, and there is a definite chill in the air. Combine elegant lace with rougher linen and cambric. Or balance the weight of wool with airy chiffon. For accessories, look for delicate necklaces in rose gold and silver, but don’t be afraid to layer on a chunkier statement piece.

A Speech Unspoken

"Flowers are love’s truest language."

Tesseitre Carhiesel Illistim, Master of Lore of the House of Illistim, spent 20 years of her life traveling the continent of Elanith and studying its flora. Her published notes on the "flower language" - so-called for their symbolic meaning - have been shared widely and this article draws on some of her insights.

The language of flowers, or floriography, is a means of communication where gifts of blooms are used to send a coded message to the recipient, allowing the sender to express feelings that may not be spoken aloud. The custom of flower gifts supposedly began in Ta'Ardenai. It has since been popularized in many books that can be found on library shelves across Elanthia and a consensus of meaning for common blooms has emerged over the millennia.

When it comes to the first emotions of love, lilac is the perfect flower of choice. Not only beautiful, but incredibly fragrant, some people prefer the scent of lilacs to that of roses. Bouquets, wreaths, wristlets, or circlets of lilac are traditional first courting gifts in Ta'Ardenai.

Speaking of roses, a full chapter could be allotted in any book to the symbolism of roses among various races and cultures. The widely cultivated rose blossom bears a thousand meanings in its petals. Roses are often used as symbols of Oleani, Voaris, and Laethe, but the Mularosian Painlord Eryael also used rose petals as his personal sign.

Most commonly though, roses are taken as symbols of love and beauty, with the red rose always meaning, "I love you." However, the freshness, hue, variety, intactness or lack of thorns, and presence of any accompanying flowers will all affect the symbolism of a rose among those who speak the language of flowers most skillfully.

With the traditional red rose, it is often said that the deeper the hue, the deeper the level or intensity of affection. Words like admiration, gentleness, grace, joy and sweetness are just a few ways to describe the meaning behind the pink rose but it usually signifies the first flush of romance.

The white rose, of course, conveys purity with its rosebud denoting a heart too young to love. The cream rose, although similar to the white, has a totally different meaning. It is said to represent charm, thoughtfulness and gracefulness. Cream colored roses also represent richness and perfection. They would be ideal for letting someone know you care, without romantic intentions.

Though true black roses don't actually exist, blooms that are the darkest red can look black. Giving someone a black rose usually denotes the end of a relationship.

So, in closing, be careful which flower you give to one you love and especially to one whose heart you wish to win. Because, despite its beauty, no one really wishes to receive a black rose!

The Love Triangle

(A love story by Ordim)

Clad in paper thin wrappings, preserving modesty for all involved, a mocha-skinned beauty nearly bursts free. Subtle aromas dance upon the warm air that rise from her. They reach out and search like tentacles of a kraken seeking their prey. I quickly succumb to their grasp, enthralled and powerless to do anything but draw closer. She trembles at my touch, but offers no resistance as all modesty is lost as the colorful paper is tossed to the ground. My senses are overwhelmed with the first bite. A myriad of flavors and sensations race across my tongue as crumbs gently settle in my clothing and upon the floor. The only evidence of our passion.

Across the room, my eyes fall upon another. Wrapped in earthy tones and presenting all for the world to see. Promises of mixing rough and gentle pleasures mixed until perfection, I find myself in front of this new love. In this I am more subtle, taking only a slice of what is offered at a time, anymore and I would be overwhelmed. A previously rare warmth reveals a world of emotions only hinted at. What was once subtle hints now pound and scream to be noticed. All restraint is lost and the trailing ring of a metal tin falling upon the floor gives up the last echoes of my transgression.

Belly full and content, I settle into my chair and gaze upon the room. For my unbridled lust, I am left alone with empty tins and wrappers. Crumbs and brightly colored stains upon my clothing are all that is left to prove that I have loved. Closing my eyes, I accept this emptiness and await eternity alone. My listless drifting is interrupted by a single chime. Sounds of shuffling and clanging metal pulls me back from the brink completely. I open my eyes once more and gaze upon the cooling rack, I feel my lust rising once again.