Book One: Normcore No More

Blaise Bender is a lifestyle storytelling experiment that brings to life a fictional charter who hails from Wheeling, West Virginia. Through the eyes of creative behind-the-scenes storytellers, Blaise Bender is thrust into a morphing cityscape of experiences that redefines her view on how to live with intention through a blend of vintage and au courant fashion, sumptuous foods and illustrated adoration.

Blaise Bender is a lifestyle. She is an aspiration. She is who you might want to be. She might be a robot.  She might be like you and me.  And then again, maybe she is not. She is who makes sense to you at the time when you need her most. She is a storytelling personae that is a fictional character and became one of us.

This is the beginning of her journey. She explores the concept that has been sweeping the nation, Normcore.

In a world where the concept of individuality is treated as a virtue worthy of sanctimonious praise, our fashion of the moment misses the mark.  Rather than the art of self-expression, we directly or indirectly promote brand – versus our individual style.

It possibly normalizes us.

And really, what good is normal?

Who, in fact, wants to be normal?

This act of artistic instability can be explained scientifically – through disproving one’s hypothesis intentionally, out of sheer distaste for our cultural forthcoming.

Fashion from the 80’s and 90’s contained a bit iconic and magic that unintentionally clasped onto the personality of whom it adorned. Clothes and accessories were statement pieces of some sort, in their own right.

Enter wearable art. Long before there was wearable tech—there was (and is) wearable art.

Nothing normal about it.

Self-expression richness.

It was (is) avant-garde in the most simplistic form: an embellishment in graphic form that appeared on a pair of pants from the back and wrap around the inner leg and around the front continuing in serpentine form; flannel was paired with overalls, paired with a studded leather jacket, paired with a cheetah printed vest, cheap grey socks and a California knitwear beanie, don’t forget the hemp necklace.

Clothing was chosen for its detailing, and it blended a harmonious balance of utilitarian day gear and club wear and high school wear, it existed as a grounding set of bigger ideas and principals defining its own unique language. There were no real boundaries, just opportunities for expression, and we were all better for it.

People expressed themselves through craft, now craft is defined by an over marketed sense of buzzwords: artisanal, handcrafted, house-made, farm-to-table, and the senseless overuse and unwarranted appropriation of ‘luxury’.

This first edition of Blaise Bender was created out of the desire to express personalities and objects that take a turn to really say something different. As Normcore continues to sweep the nation in its ‘act of beige’, it is time we all start to covet objects that define our identity much like we crave experiences for their authenticity.

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